“The body benefits from movement, and the mind benefits from stillness”Sakyong Mipham
We hear it everywhere mindset is everything. Mindset helps you set goals and achieve them. It can get you past hard times in your life and even better it can create shifts in your life that before you never knew were possible like go from making minimum wage to making millions. It all comes back to mindset. So how do you get a better mindset if you have a shitty one. Work. Lots and lots of work. Well at least for me it has been a huge uphill battle to change out of my lack mindset, some people can just realize the potential and release the conditioning of their mind, but most people have a practice or a form of exercise or an outlet to keep their minds strong. Mine has been meditation.
Meditation and I have had an interesting relationship. I’ve had a meditation practice for about 6 years now. It has been a journey to find medicine for calming my mind. Some people love yoga, some relieve stress with walking or running or just talking to someone who understands. These are all forms of natural stress relievers. I enjoy all of these and many more but honestly nothing has helped me the way meditation has. Different times in our lives call for different attention, but I come to find I always appreciate all of the benefits of meditation every season of my life. Although sometimes I do lean on it more and sometimes I fail to practice mediation has been there for me.
I could give you a list of why meditation is so powerful but I’d rather tell you my personal journey with it and how it has changed my life. I started meditating in my early twenties. My whole life I looked like the happy one with everything “together” but honestly I was a mess on the inside. I cried, a lot all of high school and didn’t really even know what a healthy mindset was. As long as everything looked okay on the outside I thought everything was fine.
When I couldn’t hold on any longer I lost control of my behavior and everything, and I mean everything felt like it was collapsing around me. I just ended a relationship, actually my first serious relationship. I was at a job that was pushing me to my breaking point and I had just been kicked out of my first apartment(by the leasing office) , and back to my parents house I went with no plan, no purpose and no hope.
I wish I could say this was my rock bottom, but it wasn’t. I hit harder and faster than I ever planned or could have imagined. I will go deeper into the particular trauma I endured but at a later time. All you need to know right now was I hit a wall of desperation. I hit rock bottom, and I never knew it was a place I’d be experiencing only at the age of 19. We all have a different rock bottom, but I’m sure a lot of us feel alone, unworthy, and even like there might not be anything to save you or pick you back up from that dark bottom.
Religion had been a safe place for me for a few years but at that time when I was at rock bottom I didn’t believe in myself, in religion or even in a God or a higher power. I fell so low and I felt all of the emotions coming out like explosions, one right after the other.
So where do you go when you feel like the world is caving in around you and you have nothing left to believe in, you go inward. At least that’s what saved me. I started to just focus on my breathe when everything felt like it was to much, and little by little I wasn’t drowning anymore.
When I realized I had everything inside of me all along. I had a life force still. I had my breath still, I had purpose still. I felt safe. Clarity came in moments. Sometimes relief, and sometimes forgiveness. So many heavy emotions were finally manageable for me, I felt healed. I knew meditation was the medicine I had been looking for. It helped me find peace, recreated my mindset into a strong powerful one, it helped build my weak immune system, it relaxed the constant tension in my body, it restored my nervous system, gave me confidence, healed me in so many emotional ways and even gained clarity with my intuition.
I didn’t start meditating like a spiritual guru in a temple. I started in my bed, where I felt safe. My breath saved me, and it still does to this day. We all start differently but if you ever want to start a meditation practice just do what feels right. Don’t judge yourself if you can’t clear your mind. Some days I still struggle with this, but it always shows me what I need to be shown, and that is a gift. Regardless if meditation is for you I hope you take the time out of your schedule to relieve some stress. Give yourself attention you deserve it!