Transcendental Meditation 101
Transcendental meditation is a simple, natural, effortless technique that is practiced twice a day for 20 minutes while sitting comfortably with your eyes closed. Our Co-Founder, Divya, has been practicing transcendental meditation since she was in the 7th grade and the practice has positively impacted her life. Read on to learn more about the many benefits and Divya’s journey with transcendental meditation.
What is Transcendental Meditation?
Transcendental meditation (TM) is a specific form of mantra meditation that is silent and allows the mind and body to settle into a quiet state of “restful alertness.” It’s a practice that leaves individuals feeling refreshed, energized, and at peace. It allows your active mind to easily settle inward through quieter levels of thought until you experience the most silent and peaceful level of your own awareness - pure consciousness.
A great way to think about the benefits of practicing TM is to think of an ocean. An ocean is busy at the surface but if you dive down to the depths it’s very still. Our mind is much like that ocean. We spend most of our time at the top of the surface thinking about a million things at once - work, errands, appointments, etc. - but no matter how much is on our minds, there’s a silence deep within just like in an ocean. This is where the benefits of practicing TM come in. The TM technique allows you to dive deep within yourself and access the level of the mind that’s always peaceful and still.
What makes it different from other meditation techniques?
Anyone can practice TM. It requires no concentrating, no control of the mind, no monitoring of thoughts (mindfulness) and no attempts to “empty the mind.” 40+ years of research has shown that practicing TM regularly may help with reducing stress and anxiety, lowering blood pressure and risk of heart attack or stroke, improving brain function and memory, bettering sleep, and increasing productivity.
When did Divya start her journey with transcendental meditation?
Divya started meditating when she was in the 7th grade. She was having a difficult time focusing in middle school while juggling so many activities. Her mom suggested that she practice TM where she learned to feel centered and grounded which helped her reduce her stress levels and sleep better. She has been practicing TM twice a day, in the morning and evening, ever since. It helps her start the day fresh and prevents her from feeling overwhelmed.
How has Divya benefited from transcendental meditation?
Divya has experienced improved health, happiness, and inner calmness. TM has also helped improve her focus and clarity and gives her the peace and quiet she desires in her busy lifestyle.
What about people who say they can’t meditate?
For people who can’t meditate or have a difficult time doing so, professional TM instructor, Emily Fitz Randolph, suggests sitting upright, being aware of your surroundings and relaxing. When you meditate for the first time, we tend to overthink how to meditate. The key to TM is letting your mind and body do its own thing. You will naturally find your own way to fall into the practice of TM. As a beginner, you don’t need to do it for a full 20 minutes twice a day. Taking it step by step for even five minutes will have positive results.
Do I have to change my mantra?
When practicing TM, you don’t have to change your mantra! You can keep the same one. Mantras are like vehicles for the mind. If you use your mantra correctly, you can use that same one for the rest of your life.
How do I know if I’m meditating properly?
The best way to check if you’re practicing TM properly is to check in with a professional TM instructor. We recommend reaching out to a TM center and getting a tune up on an as-needed basis. Learning how to practice TM is so important because it’s a very specific process. When you learn, you’re taught how to use your mantra. Let your thoughts about mantra happen naturally. You don’t have to be “in the mood” or believe in it. It’s best to stay out of your own way and let the process happen naturally.
*FUN FACT!* Did you know that individuals who have been practicing TM regularly for 5+ years have a biological age of 12 years younger than their chronological age?
Let us know if you’re ready to start on your own transcendental meditation journey @Wander_Beauty!