Meditation, it seems to be the new hottest thing. Celebrities and athletes are doing it. So what is all the buzz about? Meditation has been around in so many forms for so many thousands of years, it is hard to pin point when it started.
The common thread from all the traditions is meditation is about slowing down so that you can listen to your inner wisdom or god or the divine. Whatever you call it, meditation is about the pause. It is about the space in our own minds and taking the time to experience it.
I have been meditating for as long as I can remember. My parents raised me in a Tibetan Buddhist household. Meditation was part of our lives. As kids we mostly spent time making forts out of meditation cushions. Sliding around the floor on Gomdens. As I got older I truly began realizing the true potential and benefits of meditation. Mid way though my junior year of high school I began a regular meditation practice. The benefits were slow but profound. All though high school I struggled with depression and procrastination. When I began meditating it slowly began to change. I started projects and papers earlier (ie not the night before they were due). My panic attacks lessened, and I started to feel better overall. These changes came slowly but were very noticeable. This all came from 5 to 10 minutes of meditation per day.
My routine was get up, answer nature then sit. I created a small space in my room, with a cushion and a place for books and a candle. I would light my candle and sit. It was that simple. I used to get intimidated that I should sit for 30 mins to an hour every day, morning and night. This was overwhelming and not sustainable for my teenage life. Then I heard a friend of my parents say that it was far better to sit for 5 minutes a day than not at all. He was right.
Meditation is not about having it all perfect. You don’t need all these special things. It is not about having no thoughts. It is about creating space. Space in your mind to not have to run. Space to just be. I started to see that. During the 5-10 minutes I sat I could just be me. I wasn’t a daughter, friend, student, girlfriend. I was just me. I could just listen to my breathing. I didn’t need to do anything. I just had to be me.
We now live in a world with smart phones and smart watches. We are expected to be on the go all the time. We bring our technology to bed with us. This is why meditation is more important than ever. We need that time to just be our selves. To not be on. To just breath.
Find a space in your house or office. Turn off your phone and just be. Don’t worry if you are doing it right. If you can just breath for a few minutes you are doing it. Give it a try, you have nothing to loose and everything to gain.