I wrote about my fist foray into meditation a few weeks ago. You can find that article here: (What Happened When I Started Meditating) It’s been over a month now and I’ve had a extremely cool and interesting journey with it. Some of the results of meditation were what I thought they would be, but then other things started happening that I never imagined. After so short a time learning to meditate I’ve discovered so much about myself in completely surprising ways.
I’ve listed and explained these amazing new things below, and I encourage you to tell me about your own in the comments below!
1.) Finding Happiness: This is a new one as of just a few days ago. For the first few weeks of meditation I felt good afterwards. Calm, relaxed and ready for whatever lay ahead. I thought my meditations were successful since after a nice 20 minute session I felt good. I had no idea that ‘good’ was just a start. This morning after a nice long meditation of breathing in white positive light, I stretched in bed and smiled, feeling happy.
Happiness has always been my goal. I’ve always wanted to say that ‘I am happy’ and know that I’m being honest. I’m so close! A month ago it felt further away, but this morning I realized that it’s right there in front of me. After meditating I felt happy. Truly happy. It doesn’t always last through the whole day yet, but it will! Meditation first helped me find the calm, which in turn is helping me find the happy! The point is that I never knew how to find it before. Suddenly I have the tools to seek it out and pull it down inside of me. If I wasn’t addicted to meditation before, I certainly am now!
2.) Work Atmosphere: I’ve talked about my business partner several times. He’s… hard to always be around. His biggest flaw is really that he’s oblivious to the people around him. For the last few months I’ve been frustrated and resentful towards him. You know that feeling of frustration that burns right in the lower part of your chest? Yeah, that feeling. It built and built until I couldn’t find calm if my life depended on it! Insert the beginning part of my meditation journey.
Meditation helped me settle. I knew the day would be frustrating, but I was able to find ways to relax in my personal life. That calm had this way of sneaking into my work like. It didn’t fix the problems I had with him, but when I was calmer and feeling more relaxed, I looked at him differently. I saw all his amazing qualities; how generous and hard working he is. I saw that he truly wants to have a fun work environment, and that like me, he just wants to be happy.
So instead of focusing on his faults, I focused on how our partnership can work the best together. What are my weaknesses and his strengths, and vice versa. In a very short time, I found our entire office environment a happier and more peaceful place. I had to take the lead and make the changes, but when I felt calm coming into the day, those changes were easier to make. And now we don’t even have to try! My positivity feeds into his, and we’ve created this great relationship of support and fun. All because I found the presence of mind to understand that he’s as lost in this world as I am, and sometimes we need to help each other figure it out.
3.) Morning Makeover: I’ve always hated mornings. Like seriously hate them. Since I was a kid mornings were meant for one thing, to get ready for the day. They were work. Shower/Makeup/hair/dress or big breakfast/soccer warm-up/game. It was always a pain getting out of my warm bed to start the gruelling day of hormones, math or physical exertion. Even in my twenties after finally finishing school I had to start working. The routine stayed the same. I always got up with just enough time to get ready and leave. Then I started meditating.
Taking that short time for myself in the morning was a revelation! I started small, 10 minutes of calm. I noticed how it made the rest of the morning seem more pleasant. I even hummed when I put my make-up on. The more I meditated, the better I felt! I became obsessed. I tried to meditate longer, but I would fall back to sleep and feel cranky. I stuck to shorter meditations and realized that what I really wanted was to hold on to the calm. That wonderful feeling of relaxed peace.
So I started changing my routine. I took time for myself in the morning, just sitting or reading a magazine. At first I still felt a little stress, so after twenty minutes sitting around I did another ten minutes of meditation. And then eureka! I figured it out. What caused me stress and anxiety in the mornings was making decisions.
Bam! Easily fixed. I started picking my outfit out the night before, right down to my undies and socks. I decided how I was going to do my hair, and if I needed to shower or not. I made breakfast (overnight oats) and put it in the fridge. I even set myself up with a tea bag already waiting in my fancy mug. Everything I could possibly need to decide was done the night before. When I got up the next morning, I meditated, washed my face and did my make-up, and then sat with my breakfast, tea, and a great magazine for about half an hour. That day, I felt incredible! Now my entire morning routine is something I look forward too and I have no problem getting out of bed.
4.) Simple Living: I love my apartment and I love parts of my lifestyle. But there are always things about any space I’ve lived in that I haven’t loved. Meditation gets you to breath into the moment and be aware of yourself in the present. In this moment, I ‘need’ next to nothing. In this moment my only desire is to find peace, calm and happiness. When I open my eyes and see my ‘stuff’ I realize that none of it fulfils that.
So I’ve begun to delve into this idea of simple living and minimalism. I never thought of myself as a hoarder, but I certainly hang on to things. I have boxes on the shelves full of art materials I have never used. Books I bought in the bargain section I read once and have no interest in reading again. Makeup I got on sale that isn’t quit the right colour. The list goes on. That dress I might fit into one day. Those shoes that are one size too big. All around me are things I realize I’m holding on too for nothing.
So my change began. I’m still in the process of it, but I seriously feel already that this is the lifestyle I was made for.
I pulled out big baskets and garbage bags and started filling them. Donation, Recycling, garbage. Before I knew it I had a ton of stuff to donate, including never warn clothes and home decor items. I just kept piling them in. If I’d never used them, or couldn’t remember when I’d bought them, I didn’t need them. Piles of old magazine pages I’d ripped out, never to look at again. Four can openers (what single girl living on her own needs four can openers??). Three sets of extra bedding (I don’t even have a guest room).
You might think this would have been hard, getting rid of all these things. But for me it felt freeing. I sorted stacks of paper and mail from years past I’d never opened. I threw out any makeup I wasn’t wearing or hated. Products? Oh dear. I’ve been using coconut oil for so long I don’t even know when I bought all these fragrant lotions. If it was unopened I donated it, but if I’d used it I had to throw it away. Now when I open my eyes and look at my apartment after a soothing meditation, I only see things I love or have a great deal of meaning for me. I’m in love with my place all over again.
5.) Healthy Eating: Something very odd happened to me when I first started meditating. My eating habits become really bad. I know that sounds like I went backwards, but I found myself eating bread and cheese, and completely forgoing my vegan tendencies. but I didn’t feel bad about it! I honestly couldn’t care less. I felt like eating something, so I would eat it, and then go on with my day like nothing happened. I gained a few pounds! And I didn’t really care. Weird, right?
A few weeks in things changed. After I really got into the groove of meditating, I found that a healthier lifestyle started beaconing to me. I let myself listen to it. I started eating my breakfast, discussed above, and slowly felt a natural pull towards healthier food. My body simply craved the good feelings I knew I was going to get from them. I didn’t even have to try. There was no withdrawal or horrendous cravings. As my mind became healthier, my body naturally followed.
This came after the fact. And still, I don’t really focus on it. A few pounds lighter with glowing skin, I look in the mirror every morning and feel beautiful. But most of that is because my entire being is starting to connect to itself. My mind and body are starting to think together, and together they’re stronger. Together they’re fighting for a healthier, better feeling life. Now that they’re seeing eye to eye, I almost don’t feel like I’m working that hard at it!
I would love to hear other peoples adventures with the beginning of the meditation. I feel like I’ve only just scratched the surface of what’s going to happen in the future!