What I wish I knew BEFORE I started meditating!
Meditation had always appealed to me. It wasn't until I was harbouring an intense amount of mental, emotional and physical stress and high levels of anxiety that I knew it was time to jump straight into a practise.
The corporate world completely engulfed me at a young age and I was committed to climbing the ladder. At 28, my body was in a constant state of fight or flight. Typically, as adrenaline and cortisol levels drop, your heart rate and blood pressure return back to baseline levels. However, the stress was piling up and became always present in my body as I didn't have the healthy tools to release it. My fight or flight reaction was turned on and not recovering back to baseline levels.
I needed to make some serious health adjustments to get myself out of the current state I was in. I was using alcohol as a way of "releasing the stress" however this made my scenario worse.
I understood meditation as a means to release stress and anxiety and to incorporate a level of peace and calmness into my being. What I didn't know was the impact meditation was going to have on all facets of my life. Over a period of the first 6-12months of meditating consistently, my world gracefully shifted and completely changed for the better both internally and externally.
I had no intention of upgrading my life. My only intent was to learn a technique that would enable me to release high levels of stress from my mind and body. What changed in the early stages of my practise was miraculous and to this present moment, has remained within me. I believe the universe knew exactly what it was doing when it gently nudged me towards meditation
Here are a few of the changes I experienced at the beginning of my meditation practise that no one had told me:
My social circle reduced!
Meditation bought about such clarity of mind for me. All of a sudden, I could see the authenticity (or lack of) in the relationships I had engaged with. Quite simply, I stopped spending time with people that didn't make me feel good. I stopped putting energy into friendships just because I felt like I had to. If I didn't feel a reciprocated love, I stopped bleeding out my energy into bonds that weren't appreciated. All of a sudden, I started respecting myself more which was a huge game changer. Where I once put up with gossip, I started to walk away from. Meditation helped me to come back to myself and respecting who I am. My relationships changed because I changed how I felt about myself. Sitting in silence helped to calm my external chaos and noise and see my world so clearly.
My diet changed dramatically...
Never did I anticipate that my weight and diet would change dramatically after starting a meditation practise. The extra space I had in my mind, naturally allowed me to start making healthy choices. As the stress started to dissipate, a clearer sense of awareness took over. I started to be aware of how certain foods made me feel, how my body started responding and I adjusted my eating habits accordingly. I remember feeling such a powerful sense of control when I started choosing foods to feel good, as opposed to squashing stress. Realising that I was actually gluten and dairy intolerant and allergic to eggs was one of those moments that allowed me to grasp how far down I was in my own stress bowl before I started meditating. I was totally ignoring my own body sensations as I was functioning on a surface level just to get through the day.
My intuition got louder.
This one is a goody! The quieter my mind became, the louder my intuition grew. The stronger I got at practising mindfulness and placing my awareness in the present moment, the more I also started to lean into my own discernment and direction. I stopped being so blindly guided by the external world. I became more reliant on my own guidance and didn't need the opinion of others to sway me. All the answers I ever need, are always within. The more I trusted, the more guidance I received. This has developed immensely over the years and has expanded into my work with energetic healing. The initial realistation that we have so much more within us and it all starts with trusting our own intuition and developing this further has been nothing short of a miracle.
I have now been meditating for close to 10 years now and the changes have continued to deepen and raise the vibration of my life in totality. Let me know what meditation has done for you as I still get blown away with the extent of benefits that this beautiful practise offers us all!