Why you should meditate
Hi it’s Dr Ro here, and I wanted to address a subject having to do with meditation that keeps coming up.
Why should I meditate?
“I’ve heard about meditation, is it really important? Do I need to do it?”
I’ve read about meditation for years. My father was a Buddhist. He passed away at a young age. In my youth, before he passed away, he instilled in me that it’s really important to meditate. I understood what he was saying, but not his full reasoning behind it. He passed away too young for me to maybe consciously understand.
One of the biggest challenges right now in modern society is that people are seriously stressed. Stressed to the point where it’s affecting their sleep patterns. It’s affecting their physiology, it’s affecting their physical state, it’s affecting how they look. It’s affecting their emotional state.
I’m not here to preach, and I’m certainly not a medical doctor. I can’t give you professional advice on this. But one of the common responses that people say about meditation is that by meditating on a regular basis, they start to feel calmer. They start to feel a sense of wellness. Their stress levels appear to go down, their heart rate stops experiencing a heavy level of fluctuation.
To reiterate, you’re going to have to go check it out for yourself. I’m sharing my own experience with meditation, in hopes that it may help some of you. Everyone will have a different experience, and opinion of it. There are also many different types of meditation.
An example of how I meditate
I will sit still for five minutes and do nothing more than close my eyes and focus on the ocean. Focus on the beautiful sound of birds around me here, where I am currently. I focus on the sounds of the ocean and the birds and the wind. And then I will slowly tune the sounds out, and most likely focus on one. Then If I can allow myself to do so, I will allow my mind to be clear of everything. And just be here, be present in the moment. That’s meditation for me.
Other forms of meditation
Some people may go into a really deep transcendental meditation. They go outside of their bodies and float somewhere else. Others have to lie down on a beach, or they have to lie down on the floor on a yoga mat, or on a bed. And they have to have music in the background, or no music in the background, they have to be taken through what’s called a guided meditation and a guided visualisation. Some folks have to follow a very formulaic approach. There are ‘om’ meditations, there are so many different variations. And I think this is why people get scared, or they feel they have to do it in a specific way. I don’t necessarily agree with that. I think you have to do what feels right for you.
Coming back to the core, ‘why meditate?’
I find myself in public speaking situations a lot. Sometimes I’m speaking in front of 200, or even 1,000 people at once. And honestly the most stressful situations aren’t necessarily the larger groups, because I tend not to have much physical contact with a crowd of that size. Speaking in front of the larger groups is a delivery, with minimal interaction. When I speak in front of the smaller groups, around 100 to 200, when I’m doing interventional work, that can induce stress.
So, one of the things that I will do when I get back to my hotel room during these events is to take a moment to meditate. I don’t follow a formal process like others do. For some people that works, but for me in particular, I just simply allow myself a moment. For example, it might be just as I’m waking up in the morning before I even shower.
I’ll sit up in a physical position I’m comfortable with. I sit with my legs crossed, or lie with my palms open. I take a deep breath, and simply clear my mind. I tend to go to a place of gratitude. I focus on being grateful to be alive. I think about how grateful I am for my family, for my kids, and my beautiful partner. I think about how grateful I am for my health and vitality. Through gratitude alone, I can feel that my body chemistry is changing. It is experiencing a sense of calmness.
If you are analytical and want scientific research behind the benefits of meditating, you can go and do the research. But if you want to have a cool tool, there is something called heart math. If you look it up, there is a device you can buy that measures what is called coherence. It looks at your head and your heart. You clip it onto your ear, or your thumb, and it measures your pulse and other things. If you go into a meditative state, it detects this.
I’ve used this tool with live audiences. I’ve had people come up on stage and use it as an exercise. On one occasion in 2008, I had a lady come up on stage to do the exercise. At the time, the mortgage industry was plummeting. This woman was a mortgage broker, and her income had dropped from £350,000 to £50,0000 per year. And the first thing I asked her to do was meditate, to use the tool to bring herself back to her center. I asked her to think about all of the things she was grateful for. A shift happened instantly, vividly, in that moment. That night, she had her first full night’s sleep in three weeks.
So, meditation is an incredibly amazing beautiful experience that any human being can do at any moment in time. Even in the noise of everything that is going on around you. If you become a master of meditation you can actually allow yourself to tune out from everything that is going on around you.
Take the time to experiment. To start, just take five minutes. Allow yourself to breathe, stay calm and tune out from the world and tune into yourself. Start with gratitude, focus on one beautiful image. If you’re somebody that needs a bit of an application or a bit of functionality behind it, go and find an app called ‘Buddhify’. Buddhify is one of my favourite apps, and they’ve got some really cool meditation tools in there. The guided meditations last five minutes all the way up to 30 minutes. They’re meditation tools for different circumstances, that’s another great thing you could use as well.
Dr Ro, signing out.
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