What do you think of when you think of meditation? For me it definitely used to be something that made me think of long-haired, head band wearing hippies who had too much time on their hands. It was not for me and I’m not exactly sure why, but the thought of meditating just seemed a little silly. I would always avoid the yoga classes that involved any quiet time or group chanting and when I did take a class with a good long Savasana, my mind was moving a mile minute and I couldn’t wait for those five minutes (that felt like hours!) to be over.

In the last couple years, I have been changing my attitude about meditation as I have begun to hear so much positive information about the health benefits. Though I didn’t commit it to my New Year’s resolution list, the goal to learn was definitely on my mind, if for no other reason, than to see what the heck it was all about.

Three months ago, I decided I was ready to learn to meditate. I was having some very minor issues with my health that were more or less being caused by stress that I decided, what better time than now? Knowing that unless I paid to learn from a professional how to meditate, I would never practice regularly.  I knew that if I paid for it, it would add some value to it.

After reading the book, “Eat Pray Love” (and then of course watching the movie) I knew that I definitely needed something a little more practical that didn’t require me to fly to India or sit still for two hours of my day – starting at 4 am. I needed to learn something that I could easily incorporate into my busy life and most important, I needed something that felt natural and not forced.

I did some research online and in the community and decided that Vedic Meditation was the perfect match for me; it requires 45 minutes of my time every day, and can easily be added to my hectic schedule.  I found a great seminar in Venice that was four days and totaled no more than six hours of my time – which seems sufficient considering I was learning to sit still – I mean how much could really be to this whole meditating thing?

After successfully completing the four-day seminar, I began meditating as I learned: twice a day for twenty minutes morning and night. I loved the way I felt but I will be honest – there was no new me filled with uber relaxation, enlightenment and ultra positivity. I was still just little ole me going about my day with the same stresses as always…or so I thought.  It wasn’t until I slowly became lazier and lazier about my practice and eventually quit all together, that I truly recognized the benefits.

One of the most important things my Guru taught me was that meditation will lessen my emotional reactions to things, allowing my body to stay calm rather than jump into a more stressed mode.  This is one of the first changes I noticed, once I stopped. That little old lady driving 20 miles per hour in front of me became a much more annoying deal than it had been just the month before when I was meditating consistently. I was nicer to my husband and family. I felt more rested. I looked more rested and refreshed and the list goes on and on…

I believe in my lifetime that meditation will become such a normal part of life that people will no longer see it as silly or unnecessary. How can it not when stress is so detrimental to our health and primarily begins with our emotional reactions to life?  Stress is only getting worse in our society and in us individually as life gets more hectic and technologically advanced. But it doesn’t have to. There are ways to destress as I have mentioned throughout my posts and here is just another one – an incredibly easy and effective one. And for all of you vain readers out there like me, it will make you look younger! You wouldn’t believe how young and healthy some of these regular meditators and Gurus look – that alone sold me!!!! Below I have listed many of the health benefits of a regular meditation practice as were presented to me when I learned to meditate.

I hope with reading this post that I will in the very least change your opinion about meditation as I have changed my own and that it will give you just another fantastically effective way to reduce the stress and find better health in your life. Now that I’ve found my way back, I’m off to meditate!

🙂

*Benefits of Meditation

The deep levels of rest acquired by using this technique creates powerful, measurable changes in the physiology. Meditators have reported experiencing release of stress, more energy, clearer thinking, better health, and improved personal relationships. Here are some other notable benefits:

  • Improved memory, energy, creativity, intelligence
  • Relief from depression and anxiety
  • Relief from migraines, headaches and asthma
  • Relief from insomnia and other sleeping disorders
  • Faster reaction times
  • Reduced cholesterol levels
  • Relief from fatigue
  • Stronger immune system
  • Reduced risk of heart disease
  • Normalization of blood pressure
  • Improved sports performance
  • Reduction of biological aging
  • Reduced addictive behaviors
  • Normalization of weight

* Pulled directly from my Guru, Christian Bevacqua’s, website: Green Tree Meditation

The National Institute of Health’s Info on Meditation (Government website)

The definition and History of Meditation via Wikipedia

WebMD’s info on Meditation

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