Why I Meditate
Why on earth would anyone meditate?
Why spend so much time doing nothing, when there’s so much to be done?
This is a question I’ve asked myself on many occasions, and one I see in my client’s eyes when I suggest they give meditation a try.
In case you haven’t heard, there’s a lot of research about the effectiveness of meditation. It seems there’s a new study coming out every day.
Research has shown that meditation results in:
- increased happiness
- increased well being
- decreased depression, anxiety and stress
- increased creativity, productivity, performance and focus
- increased resiliency and coping with daily life
- healing from chronic pain, chronic fatigue and cancer
- increased fertility
- overcoming trauma
- simply being more present
- deeper self understanding and even enlightenment
My own research in 2011 found that people who had previously experienced an episode of depression and who attended an 8 week meditation program (MBCT) were less likely to relapse.
The research is convincing, and it may have helped to persuade me to begin meditation, and to persist in the early days when it felt hard and pointless, but it’s not the reason I have continued over the past 16 years.
I meditate simply because it makes my life easier.
When I meditate I can deal with the roller coaster of emotions that come my way every day.
I can deal with the whinging and the arguments over whose turn it is to choose the story at night.
I can deal with loosing my keys, my computer crashing, finding holes cut in the couch, typos in my email newsletters and cleaning the cat’s mess on the floor. Again.
I can deal with the heartbreak of my beloved Nan dying and separation anxiety when I’m away from my kids for more than a day.
And when I can’t deal it, I’ll end up in a sobbing mess on the floor. Then after the tears have subsided, I’ll realise I have been meditating on sadness and overwhelm all along.
To me meditation means being present with whatever arises. Sometimes it’s bliss and the incredible lightness of being, and sometimes it’s frustration and sadness. It’s all welcome.
Being willing to welcome anything that arises within me, means that I trust that I can welcome anything that happens. And quite frankly, that’s a relief!
I meditate because it helps me to deal with the inevitable up and downs of life, and because it makes me a happier, kinder and well functioning human being.
Why do you meditate? Leave me a comment below. I’d love to hear why!
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