Updated: Jun 7, 2022
It’s hard to avoid the topic of mindfulness, especially practicing meditation. And with all the supposed benefits of mindfulness, why would you want to avoid it? Well, because honestly, it sounds like just one more obligation to feel guilty about shoehorning into your day. Between job car, house care, spouse care, and child care, you’re also supposed to do self care?
But in the spirit of renewal and setting boundaries, I’m going to encourage you--judgement-free, no guilt here--to think about it. Because a meditation practice can pay dividends in every other area of your life, and with a little time and effort, it might not feel so cumbersome at all.
I dabbled with meditation for years but didn’t seriously engage in a practice. I enjoyed the company of my thoughts, why would I want to pause them?
But three years ago, as part of a course I began a daily meditation practice. A minimum of ten minutes, and usually not more than twenty. It was transformative. Soon I noticed that my thoughts--my comfortable companions--were changing. I could hold back from jumping to conclusions, give space for things to happen naturally. I stopped berating myself for imperfections. I found my boundaries, and could lovingly enforce them. It was transformative for me and everyone around me.
Still, even now, meditation is a practice. Some days I struggle to sit for three minutes. Some weeks I struggle to sit a single day. But like anything else you pick up, you sometimes put it down for a while only to rediscover it when you most need it. Now, I would love nothing more than to share this same transformation with someone who needs it.
"Some days I struggle to sit for three minutes. Some weeks I struggle to sit a single day. . . you sometimes put it down for a while only to rediscover it when you most need it."
Studies of meditation show it to reduces feelings of anger while improving overall coping skills. Regular meditation appears to create long-term improvements in the areas of the brain that regulate attention and coping skills. A study done on Tibetan monks who had practiced meditation consistently between five and thirty-five years showed that meditation led to overall brain optimization for increasing attention and reducing stress.
But...you don’t have to practice for thirty-five years to see the benefits of meditation! Experiments have shown regular meditation improves attention in as little as five days, with serious results appearing in only two to four weeks.
In the course of the Soul's Renewal 2021 retreat, that's only 3-weeks, you could see real benefits from meditation.
That means in the course of Soul’s Renewal 2021, you could see real benefits from following the meditation practices led by each of our facilitators. Their approaches to meditation practices differ, giving you the opportunity to try multiple approaches and see if one speaks to you more. While you probably can’t meditate wrong, different approaches--movement versus stationary, different postures, breathwork versus no breathwork--will feel different.
At Soul’s Renewal, the focus is on the journey into the world of meditation, or down new paths of that world, if you practice meditation now or have in the past. Our skilled facilitators create a truly judgment-free environment for this highly personal practice. No worrying about whether you come out each meditation session feeling enlightened, just acknowledge how you feel..
As plants get ready to grow in spring, they don’t worry about how well-prepared they are to grow, or how much the neighboring plants in the same soil are growing. They just know how to come forth into the sunlight, and bloom when the moment is right. There’s no rush, but there’s no hesitation either, a new plant is just profoundly connected to its environment. That’s the journey of meditation, reconnecting to your environment, and to yourself.