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What if we recharged ourselves as often as we did our phones? - simple facts about meditation.

In a world chock-full of health and wellness trends, it seems more people than ever are calling on meditation. Everyone seems to be interested in it, but yet so many unnecessarily connects it with religious practice or simply don't understand the idea behind this powerful tool. I used to be one of those uneducated skeptics until I discovered the book "Unplug: A Simple Guide to Meditation for Busy Skeptics and Modern Soul Seekers" by Suze Yalof Schwartz.

It's simple, smart and inspirational. 

& its a great way to start your adventure with meditation ! Here are some great excerpts from the book.

" Meditation is a practice that teaches you to unplug from distraction and experience the present moment. According to the National Science Foundation, the average person has approximately fifty thousand thoughts a day. The thoughts just keep coming, all day long, stealing our attention away from present moment. The problem is, the present moment is kind of important, because it's where your life is happening. Not five minutes ago, not five minutes from now- right here, right now. Our thoughts can trigger big, overwhelming feelings that really suck us in. This usually happens when we hit something unexpected. Something goes in a way other than we want, and we automatically go to our habituated (and usually not-so-calm) response. It goes something like this:

Your boss criticizes you: What an idiot... I hete this job...my career sucks...

You lose your wallet: I'm an idiot... I never do anything right... I suck...

You hit crazy traffic: Everyone's an idiot... why do I live here...this city sucks...

We're human; these automatic reactions are totally normal. The problem is that we're not only losing our cool - we're also losing our choice in the matter about how we respond. The thoughts and emotions take over and we feel powerless to stop them. But I've got good news for you! Just because the crazy train pulls into the station doesn't necessarily mean you have to climb on board! There is a way to be in control of your reactions and emotions, rather than the other way around. True, we can't stop any of those fifty thousand thoughts from streaming in, habitual or otherwise. But through meditation, we train our brains to let the ones that don't serve us pass right on by.

Meditation teaches you to consciously direct your attention where you want it to be, especially when you're off in distraction or reaction land. This is the act of unplugging. You do this while you're in your meditation so that it becomes an ingrained habit in your daily life. You cultivate your ability to direct your focus, and then you get to choose how you want to respond in every circumstance rather than feeling like puppet at the mercy of your automatic wiring. 

(...)

With your mind quieted and directed, you can tap into amazingly clear and peaceful present moment. That's where the bliss is! The present moment is the ticket to everything you're looking for: happiness, love, stability, confidence, wisdom, focus and deep calm. Once you feel it, you'll want more and more. It's better than vacation. Better than therapy. Better than shopping, or golf, or chocolate. Oh, and it's free ! " 

There are so many reasons to meditate, but the most compelling one is that it literally changes your brain. Neuroscientist Sara Lazar's amazing brain scans show meditation can actually change the size of key regions of our brain, improving our memory and making us more empathetic, compassionate, and resilient under stress. Watch her fascinating TEDx talk to find out more !

Are you ready to start your journey with meditation? Remember! You don’t have to be in a fancy studio to get your practice on — your favorite corner of the couch, a quiet space outdoors, or your bed are great options. There are plenty of free guided meditation on you tube and even more apps to download that will lead you through the process. Good luck & have fun !


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