“Life is the dancer, and you are the dance” – Eckhart Tolle
In my early twenties, I read the book ‘The Power of Now’ by Eckhart Tolle and it completely changed my life! I realised that up until that point I was living my life with a self-destructive voice inside of my head that constantly told me that I was worthless, not good enough, you can’t do this or that and was generally negative. It was like a great big dark fog got lifted from my life. Being mindful of your self-talk and thoughts and giving yourself the power to change them is life-changing! When you are constantly in your head and in your thoughts you cannot live in the moment.
It is so important that we live in the NOW. Not the past and not the future. Right now. This very moment is all that we know is certain.
I notice this now several years later when I am out and about I can completely recognise the people who are just going about their day lost inside their own head. They are walking around with a glazed over look in their eyes and they are not really connected to what is going on around them. When you are living in the present you are more compassionate and connected to everything and everyone around you.
If you are having problems with stress and anxiety, or basically any self-destructive, obsessive or negative thought patterns meditation is a great way to bring you pack to that present moment. Often bad habits like smoking or drinking are coping mechanisms that bring us back to the present moment. Of course, meditation is a much healthier way to get that much-needed peace. Meditation allows your brain to take you outside of your thoughts and your ego and helps to gain a much greater perspective.
A few months ago I did the thirty-day meditation challenge with Faith Hunter over at doyouyoga.com. It seems funny that ten minutes of meditation could make much of difference in your day – but it does! I definitely noticed an increased level of focus with my work, reduced stress, more productivity, and I was generally happier as I went about my day.
Here are a few benefits to meditation but there are so many more! It is basically a work-out for your brain!
– Increases concentration and focus
– Reduces stress
– Increases self-awareness
– Helps with brain function
– Increases immunity to disease
– Increased spiritual connection
I think meditation will become more and more popular. Our brains are only designed to carry one thought at a time. Watching moving screens and being on our phones all of the time can be really overstimulating.
Last week I started meditating again as part of my miracle morning. I also downloaded the meditation app. Headspace. It is guided meditation and I am really loving it. They work with you to train you how to meditate which is great if you are a beginner and are having trouble letting go of your thoughts. Basically, you want your brain to be still and when thoughts come into your head you want to recognise them and then let them go.
When you get better at bringing yourself back to the present moment and meditating you can then include more of it in your day! When you exercise for example is a great time to bring mindfulness into your movements. Yoga is fantastic because you have to be connected to yourself and the moment to be able to do the poses. It really brings you out of your head which is why I still love to have my main yoga practice at the end of the day as I find it so relaxing. Running is also great – you can focus on the movements of the body, your breath, and your surroundings – I love it!
A lot of our stress comes from focusing on the outcome instead of enjoying the journey. If you are constantly worrying about the outcome of all of your actions you are going to struggle to live in the present moment and really enjoy the journey and the process. The process is where true enjoyment and passion lives. We cannot be certain what will happen 10 years from now, 5 years from now or even tomorrow. Meditation is a great tool that we can use in our day to train ourselves to regularly bring us back to the now.
Have you tried meditation? What are your thoughts?