Imagine your best self. You are relaxed, engaged and enthusiastic about life. You are focused yet flexible enough to cope with distractions, demands and interruptions. You are performing at your best and loving it.
Hold that picture in your mind. Perhaps you’re not even at work, maybe you’re at the gym, on the golf course or hosting a dinner with friends.
What qualities do you have at that moment? How do you cultivate these qualities and how do you access them at will?
1. Meditation teaches you how to calm down the busy thoughts and focus.
Your meditation practice is a way to train your mind to quieten down and focus on one thing. Typically, that thing is your breath. Try it now, can you notice the cool air coming in your nose as you breathe in? If you can, you can meditate.
2. When you meditate regularly you are less prone to stress.
You learn how to relax the body and mind at will. In that process, you learn to read the signals the body gives you when stress is starting to creep in. It has also been proven that meditation makes you look younger. Say goodbye to those frown lines!
3. Meditation boosts energy and productivity.
Meditation is like a little holiday for the brain. The brain doesn’t rest like the body does when you go asleep. Quite the opposite! It’s very busy filing away thoughts and creating dreams. The brain rests when we give it something interesting but not stressful to think about; a good book, a movie, a pleasant day-dream on a sun lounger or a meditation practice that you enjoy and relax into. Meditation can be your brain’s daily holiday so you emerge from your practice empowered and revived.
4. Meditation improves relationships.
Naturally, you become less reactive. You don’t even have to try, it just happens. In meditation, you cultivate a more positive frame of mind. It becomes effortless to simply breathe and stand strong and calm, regardless of the challenges you might face.
5. Meditation makes you feel better.
Feel better in your body, in your mind and in your ability to decide where to direct your thoughts at any given moment. Meditation can even help with weight control. It is empowering, liberating and life-changing.
Quite simply, the ‘you’ after you meditate is a nicer, better ‘you’. It’s accessible to all of us, this powerful practice. Start small with just 5 minutes a day. Notice the benefits, smile smugly and repeat!
Sylvia Ferguson is a DCU and a Yoga Therapy Ireland graduate. Sylvia teaches yoga and corporate meditation in Dublin; RTE and Facebook are among her weekly clients. She also provides online tuition with yoga and meditation classes to follow at home.
Whether she’s leading teacher training with Yoga Hub or hosting retreats worldwide with Exotic Yoga Retreats, Sylvia’s style of teaching encourages strength and resilience with a deep sense of lasting calm.