25 Mar Self-Coaching Strategies: Reflections after Meditating for 30 Consecutive Days (and Counting)
The FBG Health Management Consulting team designs a customized well-being program for our employees annually. By participating in activities set up throughout the year, we earn wellness points to save on health care premiums and impact overall wellbeing.
One of the point-earning opportunities this year is to meditate for 120 minutes in a month using a meditation app provided by FBG. Meditation was not something I did on a consistent basis previously. I am, however, all about earning points and therefore set a goal to meditate each day for one month.
From the start, I knew I’d need to make this as easy as possible to successfully achieve what felt like a lofty goal. That meant selecting a dedicated place and time to meditate before getting started. Each morning, I settle on my outdoor porch immediately following exercise. Five minutes of meditation a day seemed doable and allowed me to achieve the monthly goal. After a week, I noticed such a difference in my overall well-being that I quickly moved to 10 minutes a day, which is now my sweet spot.
The benefits of consistent meditation surprised me. I realized that quieting my mind, slowing my heart rate, and giving my body time to be still helped immensely. I felt better physically and mentally, and I found myself anticipating the variety of sounds each morning would bring, from rain falling to ducks quacking.
The greater impact of meditation happened as the day unfolded. I noticed that I was driving with more patience and feeling less rushed. The most unexpected benefit was the ability to use the practice of meditation when making decisions. Pausing for a moment to breathe, especially when a decision felt difficult or caused stress, gave me clarity and a perspective I may not have otherwise had.
Even with the gains I’ve experienced, my daily meditation is not perfect. I struggle at times to keep the ever-growing checklist out of my thoughts, and it takes intention to fully let all of my thoughts go. And I used my car horn yesterday – twice. Some days are better than others, and that is reason to keep coming back to the practice.
If you are curious about meditation, I encourage you to build 5 to 10 minutes into the day and see what happens. Consider starting on the first of next month to give yourself a little time to prepare. There are several apps out there, finding one that resonates with you is important. Our partner and friend Meryl Arnett has an incredible podcast, The Mindful Minute which can help get you started. Meditating for 5 to 10 minutes can make a tremendous difference in your daily life.
Finding time to quiet the mind and meditate is one way you take care of you.