Meditation = hapiness
That big H word is all the hype these days...
By Michelle Bartolo
I’ve read copious amounts of articles with various titles: ‘How To Achieve Happiness’, ‘What Happy People Do Everyday’, ‘The Art of Happiness’, ‘Do These 10 Things And You Will Be Happy’…
Is it that easy? Can happiness come with an instruction book?
The word ‘meditation’ is floating around as well, yet this one I can vouch for. It’s effective. It deals with what’s real, what’s realistically happening right now. It strengthens the team effort between your mind and body – the best ‘business’ partners you will ever encounter. When we live in the past it brings on depression, while thinking of the future brings on feelings of anxiety and stress. Now the present equates peace. I think it’s a no-brainer as to where we all want to be.
Happiness is a work in progress; a lifelong journey that is sometimes present and at other times not. Meditation teaches us to sit with that. Meditation allows us to process whatever we are feeling, and to feel every layer of that emotion with open arms. You sit and listen as if you were with your best friend. Ears wide open. This is a mindful meditation technique that is more practical, and is very useful in our everyday lives. I’m big on using visualisation techniques; when I ‘sit’, I like to pretend I’m an astronaut discovering my ‘inner space’!
So how can meditation make you feel happier?
I’ve been meditating regularly for eight years now and do 30 minutes per day on average. Sure, everyone’s experiences are different, but this is what makes us who we are. This is what makes us feel happy. It’s about being true to yourself and not striving for perfection, but rather honouring honesty. It’s important to connect with who we are, how we feel, and what we believe in. We follow all of these things to be sure that we are living a life that sets our soul on fire and feeds our passion.
Meditation heightens instincts and helps you find more security within yourself and what you want for yourself. It makes you feel calm because you’re giving the mind and body some time to listen to what they’re saying and how they’re feeling. No distractions. Through meditation we discover ourselves by developing this intimate relationship between our mind and body. The breath is all about that connection. If there’s no breath, there’s no relationship.
I was astonished when researching the effects that the mind has on our whole lives and discovered that western science has only just begun studying the notion some 50 years ago. Ayurveda (based on the idea Hindu tradition of balance in bodily systems and uses diet, herbal treatment, and yogic breathing) began their studies of the mind thousands of years ago. These ancient traditions stand strong and wise.
The majority of us have become so busy – and with the use of social media, so unconnected and focused on where we’re going, as opposed to where we are. The mindful meditation practice allows us to observe where we are and to learn to flow through life’s waves, finding a balance between the action and the stillness. In my experience, the irony of teaching meditation is that people find it the hardest thing to do, when all it is that they have to do is nothing.
You can do five minutes per day and it can be done virtually anywhere – even while waiting in a queue. Make your time work for you. It’s part of the self-care we need in this day and age. This technique can’t be sold; you have to find the courage to stick through the unravelling of the mind and come out on the other end with more space and freedom. It has to be tried and tested.
“There’s so much noise in the world today that we’ve forgotten to hear the beautiful sound of silence.” Silence will calm your soul – and a calm soul is a happy one.