Oprah & Deepak's 21-Day Meditation Experience started this week. Its a free guided mediation series. Each episode is available for up to five days so it's not too late to jump in.
This is my third 21 Day experience with Deepak and Oprah. I had been dibbling and dabbling with mediation for a little while, because so many people and sources rave about its benefits. I could never get a good grasp of it though, or take it seriously. A girlfriend, earlier this year recommend this experience.
I've since been sold on the practice. The first 21 day guided meditation experience is what helped me understand and appreciate the process. Now most days, early morning, I meditate for 5-10 minutes. The 21 day program kind of forced me to consider investing more time. Each episode in the series is about 20 minutes.
The light in me see the light in you.
... also known as Namaste. Namaste is what is often said at the end of a mediation practice. I had no idea that this beautiful phrase was the meaning of Namaste. One of my girlfriends tells me this all the time, "the light in me see the light in you." It sounds kind and gracious, and I thought it was just that, I didn't know the extent of its meaning.
Namaste is a greeting in ancient Sanskrit that is still used in India and Nepal. It is commonly used to welcome practitioners to a course and conclude the practice in both yoga and meditation. Further, incorporating them into your practice can deepen your connection to the spiritual world and maximize the benefits of yoga and meditation. (source)
I'm still new to meditation, under a year in, with progressive consistency. It's something I see myself practicing longterm. The guided mediation series has been really influential. On the days that I practice without a guide, meaning no one is giving me a mantra to repeat or talking me through the practice, I use the free mediation app, Calm. The app allows you to pre-select background music and how many minutes you want to meditate for.
When in doubt about what to do during an unguided practice, I focus on deep breathing and gratitude. The gratitude portion is simply thinking about the people, things, situations, and experiences that you're grateful for. I learned this from Shawn Stevenson of the Model Health Show Podcast, my favorite health podcast. There was a mediation episode he curated that was really insightful. One nugget shared on the episode, which I heard loud and clear, was that mediation can make you look years younger!
Some other commonly report benefits are directly related to health and well being.
- Stress Reduction
- Can Generate Kindness
- Lengthens Attention Span
- Controls Anxiety
- Promotes Emotional Health
These are just a few and all great. At the bare minimum for me, mediating is a nice start to the day.