I was 26 years old, and my life was in turmoil. Just four years earlier, I thought that graduating from college and getting married a week later was going to fulfill me. Boy, was I naive. My prized industrial engineering day job was a drudge. And who knew that marriage could be so difficult? The worst, however was yet to come. On a July evening, I came home from work to find my young wife asphyxiated from carbon monoxide poisoning. My sadness and trauma were intense. It was surreal. I was lost.
Following her death, I lived for nights and weekends. Parties with friends were frequent. Reflecting back, most of us were self-medicating to dull the pain of our stress filled lives. At the time, I was unaware of how dysfunctional my life had become. It all seemed normal. Wasn’t everyone’s life like mine?
Then just one month following this tragic event, there was a breakthrough. My good friend Bob, invited me to join him at an introductory lecture on meditation at the local community hall. During the teacher’s talk, he said that there was something missing in most people’s lives. What’s missing is inside; it’s not out there in the world. I was intrigued, maybe this guy was on to something. So, I signed up to take his course. I had never done anything like this before.
Meditation: an energy booster
A revelation that things were changing for the better came to me in just the first few weeks after learning to meditate. Actually, the first clue occurred just a couple hours following my very first meditation class.
That afternoon on our drive home, Bob and I stopped at a local sandwich shop for lunch. After eating, I caught myself skipping to the cash register to pay my bill. What’s happening? It was spontaneous, a burst of exhilarating bliss. Could meditation have something to do with this great feeling? I didn’t know, however I had a glimmer of hope.
From that day forward, I chose to meditate everyday as my instructor suggested. Usually twice a day for 15 – 20 minutes at a sitting, before and after work. After just a few weeks of daily meditation practice, it was obvious I was more awake, alert, and happier. During the work day I was looking forward to meditating when I got home. Meditation gave me a daily boost of energy that lasted for hours. It wasn’t until I began this practice that I realized how much fatigue was impacting the quality of my life.
When we are tired, our brain is in a fog. Imaging techniques show us that the synapses of the brain are negatively impacted by stress and fatigue. The CEO of the brain, the prefrontal cortex goes off line under chronic stress and the knee jerk, fight of flight response dominates our actions. Meditation practice brings the CEO, the wise and intuitive decision maker back into the game of life. Even during the early days of my meditation experience, I felt meditation was depositing money in the bank, and I was the bank!
Adrenal fatigue be gone
I’ve now been teaching meditation for over 40 years, and will always remember the highly respected gynecologist, Helene Leonetti, M.D. saying: “I have a zillion patients suffering from Adrenal Fatigue, and I refer them all to you.” Many are anxious, exhausted, irritable, in chronic pain, moody, and lacking motivation. She strongly encouraged them to attend an introduction class, then learn the technique of Effortless Meditation™ and practice it.
The deep rest of our meditation practice heals and restores our adrenal glands. When they are overly taxed by chronic stress, they burn out and the above symptoms result. For relief, look inside. There is nothing to do, other than sit with your eyes closed and use this simple mental technique. Effortless Meditation will “do” you. After short periods of meditation, the benefits spontaneously show up in our daily experience.
A new client recently declared, “everything is better with meditation in my life.” Echoing those sentiments, William Blake, the famous poet and philosopher said, “to enjoy life more, clean the windows of perception.” Here’s a tool to do just that.
If you’d like to know more, or wish help getting started, or if you need assistance to deepen your experience in meditation, I would love to talk. You can call me at 610-670-6700.
Director, Stress Reduction Resources