I was recently interviewed by "The Meditation Guy" on how to start an easy meditation practice. I hope you enjoy the interview!
1. What is Meditation in Your Eyes?
To me, meditation is simply being present with the breath and witnessing the mind, body, and spirit in any given moment. Meditation can include many other methods and practices of finding inner peace, letting go of stress, and feeling positivity and love, but at its core, meditation is simply a state of pure being.
2. Why is Meditation so important?
Meditation is important because it allows us to shift our perspective and find clarity. It gives us space from our thoughts so that we can remember our true nature of love and peace within.
3. What Is your Favorite Meditation Technique in your Daily Practice and how often you Meditate?
I love to meditate in silence and practice listening to my body and my heart. The body has so much wisdom if we are willing to slow down and really listen. I find that I can hear my intuition and receive guidance for the day when I quiet my thoughts and listen to what’s in my heart. This practice has led me to my most successful, joyful, and creative experiences in my life.
There have been phases of my life where I would meditate every morning. But lately, I simply practice mindfulness as I’m going about my day through different activities and I meditate whenever I feel inspired.
4. Why is the “conventional wisdom” about Meditation just plain wrong?
I think conventional wisdom about meditation would say that it is a religious practice or has to be practiced within Hinduism or yoga. This is simply not true. Meditation is a practice that can benefit anyone from any religion or no religion, whether they practice yoga and have spiritual beliefs or not.
5. What are the common lies, myths, and misconceptions about Meditation?
Many people assume that you have to meditate in lotus posture for an hour a day in order for it to be effective. This is not true. You can meditate while you walk, while you do dishes, while you shower. It’s simply a practice of being present whenever possible.
People also say that they aren’t the type of person who can meditate because they can’t keep still or calm their thoughts. But that’s exactly why we meditate! No one starts out with the ability to sit still or quiet their thoughts perfectly. We all start at the beginning and it takes lots of practice to be able to calm the mind. But it’s worth it!
6. How did you stumble upon your solution?
I discovered meditation when I started practicing yoga regularly. I began journaling every morning and meditating afterward. I loved starting my day with such a clear mind. When I would go within and start listening, I discovered the meditation techniques that I use and love today.
7. How do you typically get started with Meditation on a step-by-step basis?
It’s a good idea to first try guided meditations so that you can listen and follow along with a teacher who will show you the basic steps. But if you’d like to begin with silent meditation, I always recommend starting with breath awareness. Slowly relax your whole body and begin to listen to your breath. See how many breaths you can count without your mind getting distracted. Notice how the breath feels in your body and focus on each sensation. This is a great place to start your practice. Then you can begin to add a mantra to your breath awareness. For example, breathing in, you can silently repeat the words “I am.” Breathing out, you can silently repeat the words, “at peace.” See how long you can stay focused on this practice without your mind get distracted with thoughts. This is a wonderful meditation practice to begin with.
8. What is the #1 reason most people FAIL to succeed with Meditation?
I think people give up on meditation because they believe that they aren’t achieving a specific goal with meditation. People think that the purpose of meditation is to have zero thoughts - and that’s not really possible. Truly, there is no failure or success with meditation - it’s simply a practice that changes every day. Some days it will be easy to let go of thoughts. Other days it will be very difficult. This doesn’t mean you are failing at meditation. It means that you are using this practice to the best of your ability when you need it. It’s important to let go of the outcome with meditation. Then there’s no need to give up. It’s always an exploration that will change day to day.
9. What are some specific roadblocks to watch out for?
Watch out for negative thoughts that are judgmental and frustrated toward yourself. If you are very emotional or upset, it may not be the best time to meditate. Give yourself time to cool off and process your feelings. If you try to meditate when you are upset, you may end up being hard on yourself and giving up.
10. How can you, specifically, overcome these roadblocks?
Be patient with yourself. Be kind toward yourself. Meditation is a subtle and gentle practice that requires patience, stillness, and surrender. If you are overwhelmed with negative thoughts, journal about it or do something fun before attempting to meditate. Keep it light and go easy on yourself.
11. What are some specific action steps that you can take, today?
Any time you feel stressed or overwhelmed, stop and take 3 deep breaths. Clear your mind and reset with a positive attitude.
12. What if you got started today with Meditation... what would your life look like in 30 days, 90 days, or a year?
I believe you would feel much more peaceful, joyful, and present in just 30 days. In a year or more, your whole life could change. Meditation helps us tap into our intuition and our higher purpose. Over time, meditation will help you live the life of your dreams, filled with happiness, peace, love, and presence.
13. What additional resources are available to help ensure success?
Check out my YouTube channel Divinely Gia for hundreds of helpful meditation videos. Listen to Insight Timer app for thousands of great guided meditations from teachers around the world.
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Gia writes about her journey through life and the many twists and turns of spiritual growth, relationships, health & healing, life as a performer, and the ever-unfolding path back to her heart.
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