On March 11th, I entered into a 21-day meditation challenge with two of the most well-known successful spiritual leaders of our time. One is most well-known for his ability to explain the inexplicable connection between our spirituality and our physical beings. The other is a highly public figure known for her riches, generosity, and deep spirituality guiding her to the right opportunities at the right times.
For 21 full days, I sat down to my computer with an open mind and open heart to listen to what Oprah and Deepak Chopra had to teach me that day.
The biggest thing I learned from the experience was that these two amazing teachers didn’t teach me much of anything. In fact, I learned everything I needed to in those 21 days from the stillness in my heart.
For this meditation challenge, I committed to being open to whatever it was that I needed to learn. These are the two major insights I took away from my 21 days committed to a quiet heart and still mind:
By nature, my body is in balance. The body is so much smarter than the brain. In any given moment a million different actions are being taken without me having to do anything to facilitate them. Each and every time my heart beats or I take a breath, there is no conscious thought – just an automatic action.
When my body is not in balance (like if I have a headache or stomachache), it means that something that I am doing is throwing off the internal balance. The same can be said for when I begin to crave certain foods or when I have stiff muscles. My body is sending me signals to return to a certain point of balance – whether that is getting up from my chair to move a little bit or eating some carbohydrates to give me energy.
What’s so encouraging about this insight is that there are always things that will restore that balance – what holds us back from achieving that perfect balance all the time is the knowledge of what to do to achieve it. I’m excited and encouraged knowing that every time I feel less than stellar – that there will always be something I can do (or my body can do for me) to return me back to my balanced state.
The second thing I walked away with was the reminder that what I see as my outer world is a direct reflection of my inner world. I learned that my thoughts aren’t just things that come and go. But even the tiniest bit of internal dialogue can affect what appears to be happening around me in my daily life.
We’re often told that it only takes one thought to create a cascade of those specific thoughts. One negative thought leads to more negativity and one positive thought can lead to more positivity. I’m encouraged that even when I begin doubting myself or thinking about others negatively, that I can turn it around by remembering all that I am grateful for. With positive thinking and gratitude, I will have more positivity and things in my life to be grateful for.
From this experience, I am even more grateful for having this one body that I have been given. This 21-day meditation challenge has only solidified more that it is my job and my responsibility to keep it as much in great health and balance so that I can live a long and abundant life.