You’ve likely noticed that there is something of a ‘meditation’ trend happening.
Prominent figures such as Oprah have even jumped on the bandwagon, having launched a meditation app collboratively with Deepak Chopra.
But this is one ‘fad’ that we can definitely get behind, and one that shouldn’t be going away any time soon.
We’ve discussed the benefits of meditation and mindfulness a number of times on the blog.
But meditation encounters its fair share of sceptics.
People wonder how simply sitting, breathing, and focusing could have a significant change on their lives.
It’s a simple and valid question, but there’s an equally simple and valid answer…
Many of us are simply not in tune with our emotions.
We are so busy all day in one form or another, that we don’t have time to recognise, differentiate and appreciate our inner thoughts and feelings.
So we experience a range of emotions all day long, without taking the time to understand what is causing them, or how they are manifesting themselves.
We are on the move from the moment we get up, and in our down time, we’re often distracted by digital screens.
This busyness also contributes to the hesitation towards trying meditation…
It’s easy to tell ourselves that we don’t have time to just sit and be still for a few minutes.
And worse, even if we could take that time, we’d be too occupied with the thoughts about the things we should be doing.
And that’s the exact point!
By sitting and meditating with your thoughts, you realise that they are just that: thoughts.
Feeling worried and anxious about certain things is not going to change their outcome.
So taking some time out helps you to reflect on the fact that in many cases, the source of our anxiety is irrational, unecessary, and gets in the way of our ability to be productive, rather than enhancing it.
Here’s a simple example:
You wake up in the morning feeling overwhelmed by everything you have to do that day.
Your mind is cluttered with a competing list of demands and their potential outcomes.
But this mind clutter will not make you any more able to get your jobs done.
For your child, perhaps they wake up on the day of an exam feeling anxious about their performance.
Will this anxiety help them to perform better?
Of course not. It is more likely that these feelings of worry will distract them from concentrating and being able to process the questions effectively and efficiently.
So think of moments of meditation and mindfulness as short ‘holidays’ from our constant mind chatter.
These moments may help to relieve both the physical and psychological symptoms of anxiety, as well as improving our focus, and giving us a better understanding of our thoughts and emotions.
Meditation and mindfulness are skills that can and will be improved with practice.
So the first time you try it, you may find it difficult and be easily distracted, but this is completely normal.
So consider implementing a meditation ritual into your routine, and encouraging the same from your family.
You may feel that you don’t have twenty or even ten minutes in your day to spare for meditation, but even a 30 second ‘mindful moment‘ can do you a world of good.
For more information and guidance about mindfulness and it’s benefits, have a look at the links below.