Colleen Ekback, MA
Reduce your stress and/or anxiety?
Feel more energized and alert?
Be more focused throughout your day?
Gain more self confidence?
Gain self awareness and acceptance?
Feel more certain about your decisions?
Gain a better understanding of yourself and/or your spirituality?
Feel more calm, patient, relaxed and happy overall?
Meditation can help you create a sense of clarity and inner peace that calms you throughout your day. As a counselor, I have read quite a bit about meditation and believed that it works “if you do it”, but to be honest – I didn’t do it - until recently. I am astounded by how great I feel -mentally, physically and emotionally. And all I’m doing is taking some time to “just chill.” The more I meditate, the more benefits I notice. I’ve gotten to the point where I crave it because it calms me all day long and helps me focus and feel more in control of stress.
I think the reason it took me so long to implement the practice of meditating was because I created unrealistic expectations for myself. Maybe you can relate. I thought I would have to do it “right” every single day or somehow I would fail. So I didn’t even bother to give it a shot. Well, I actually tried a few times but I was distracted and couldn’t experience the “inner peace” that I was supposed to feel. So I gave up.
It wasn’t until I had to stop doing yoga because of back pain that I decided that I would try meditation to replace that “relaxed while simultaneously energized feeling” I loved so much after practicing yoga. I parked 15 minutes early to pick up my son after school, cranked the a/c and turned on the spa music radio station. I closed my eyes and tried to think of nothing. It may sound easy, but it was actually hard. However, I did feel more relaxed after the first day, despite struggling with thoughts that came into my head. I decided that I would park in the same spot the next day and every day that week. By the end of the week, looked forward to my quiet time. I let go of the judgment and just relaxed. I visualized a place that relaxed me and just went there in my mind. I imagined colors, sounds, and the peaceful environment. I exhaled the thoughts that entered my mind and let them dissipate into the universe. I could deal with them later. This was my time to just relax. After each meditation, I felt like I took an energizing nap. I felt more confident to deal with whatever was bothering me or my never ending to-do list. I felt great!
By the second week, I noticed that I felt more relaxed and content overall and I looked forward to meditating every day. I literally felt less bogged down by stress and generally felt “lighter.” Really! It no longer felt like something I “should” do but a treat for myself that made my world slow down and feel more manageable. I began to believe the claims about the benefits of meditation because I actually experienced the calmness that was there all along, just waiting to emerge under the anxiety and stress, self doubt.
Since then I have been hooked and I want to spread the word. Meditating is not hard to do. It is actually the easiest thing you will do all day and you will enjoy multiple benefits. It is hard to believe that by simply relaxing for minutes a day you can gain so much. I encourage you to try it and keep trying it. Commit to a goal and strive to achieve it. If you are struggling, I am happy to help you.
Lastly, I will be posting more blogs and information about meditation on the Life Track Facebook page. I will also suggest participating in a meditation challenge that might motivate you to give meditation a fair try. I’m really glad I finally did and I hope you will be, too.
Good luck & best wishes,