Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Meditate it out

Back in August of 2015, I began asking the Universe for signs of what was coming next for me. My youngest had just turned four and I felt like it was time to input back to the world. I didn't know what was in store for me but I was asking the questions. 

I kept getting the feeling to meditate and to meditate on a daily basis. I began looking for meditation retreats to jump start my practice again. I came across a 2 for 1 special for a meditation weekend at the Chopra Center in Carlsbad, California. I immediately bought the tickets knowing that I could easily find a friend to go with me. After all, I bought the tickets in November for a March event. 

Learning TM

In the meantime, as the universe works I started getting sponsored links for Transcendental Meditation (TM) on my Facebook newsfeed. This was in January. I started to look into it and decided to learn it and did in February. I took my first class on SuperBowl Sunday actually. 

The concept behind TM is that you sit comfortably for 20 minutes in the morning and 20 minutes in the evening while repeating a mantra given to you by a TM teacher. The mind naturally is always trying to gravitate to its original form of bliss and calm. It is given that opportunity during TM therefore transcends to the purity of what it is. When you get out of meditation, the mind brings with it that calm into your everyday life. 

I decided I was going to give it a good try. Of all the meditation techniques I've tried, TM is by far the easiest. There's no struggle in it. If a thought comes during the mediation then gently go back to the mantra, if you hear noise no problem, if someone walks in on you treat it as an interruption and add 5 minutes to the end of your meditation.  It's a very free flowing easy meditation. I am loving it!

Chopra Center

I went to the Chopra Center this past weekend and was open minded to what they were going to teach. After all this was the year of the daily meditation as well as learning any technique that came my way. I would love to learn enough to be able to teach children and particularly teenagers how to meditate. 

I was amazed that they basically taught the same thing at the Chopra Center. There were very few differences. We were given what's called a Primordial Sound Mantra (PSM) and had to repeat it for 30 minutes twice a day. 

It's just a tool, find the one that works for you!

I approached one of the teachers after the class and asked if the Chopra Center was basically just teaching TM but calling it something different. Deepak Chopra had apparently studied with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the guru who developed TM. The concept is the same but the mantras are different. TM calls is transcending, PSM calls it getting in the gap. TM asks for no more than 15-20 minutes, PSM says to meditate for 30 minutes. 

I started to think about it all and realized it's just a tool and thank goodness there are plenty of them to choose from. Try them all and practice what feels good to you. If meditation is not where you are right now, maybe do yoga. It doesn't matter. Just allowing yourself the time to just be is essential to our well-being. It was so nice to be surrounded by 100 people who just wanted to find a way to feel good. When we feel good, we are able to take that feel good into the world. 

Changes ...

I can definitely say that I am a lot calmer than a month ago. I definitely have gotten angry with situations but I have been able to work through them in a better way. Yesterday was a sticky day for me. I felt like I was running into an uncomfortable situation a little too often. I took a moment to realize that it's probably me and that I need to get to a better place. I meditated last night and then again this morning. It's helped to give me perspective into the situation. 

I found that my eating habits have changed as well. I'm not as eager to eat something that doesn't make me feel good. The whole time in California, I ate really well. Normally on vacation, I eat more fries or dessert but I found myself not wanting to do that. 

Share with me your thoughts

Let me know if you've been to the Chopra Center for a class or if you've practiced TM or if you have another meditation technique that you love. You may leave a comment below, or on my Facebook page or email me to 

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