Happiness

How to get started with meditation

Our spiritual Expert in Residence, Jasmine Dawes, reveals how our inner world is like a garden – it will only blossom if it’s tended to with love.

Written by Jasmine Dawes
Published 21.10.2021

The benefits of meditation are plentiful. Whether you’re a beginner or regularly meditate, Jasmine Dawes is here to talk us through the benefits and guide us through how to get started.

As the season begins to change, we’re invited to slow things down and gradually turn our awareness inwards, to connect with the energy of autumn.

Autumn invites us to unwind and nurture our inner worlds through stillness and self-reflection. The work that we do throughout this time and the energy that we cultivate then gets released outwardly through springtime and summer and we reap the rewards of our work. This is why it’s important to be mindful throughout these autumn months and become conscious of our inner activity.

If you imagine your inner world like a garden, it will only blossom with beauty and life if it is tended to with love. If you neglect it, the soil will harden and it will start to develop weeds – making it impossible for anything of value to grow. Thus, the energetic seeds that you plant in your mind throughout winter are what will manifest next year.

TWO WORLDS, ONE HEART

I feel it’s also important for us to recognise that we have two worlds in which we experience events throughout the course of our life: the outer world and our inner world.

These are two entirely separate places that are equally important, and we must remember to take both into consideration as we move through the stages of our life. Try to remember this concept when addressing other people, too. What we see them experiencing in their outer world does not necessarily reveal what is occurring in their inner world – we must move through every relationship we encounter with empathy, compassion and awareness.

Now, as much as we can be good at hiding pain and difficulty on the inside, the extent to which we nurture our inner garden tends to reflect out of us energetically.

If you spend time with the Self – tending to the soil, planting the seeds and watering them consistently – those flowers will bloom out of your face, glow through your energy and aura, and attract positivity, calm and abundance into your life.

Joy and happiness are quite literally the most beautiful things you can wear. When you find yourself in the company of someone who has a nurtured and positive inner world, you can absolutely feel it – and it’s contagious. Likewise, if you neglect it or, even worse, abuse it – or allow anyone else to come in and stamp around on it, for that matter – you will end up with drained and tired energy that, equally, you wear every day.

GET GARDENING

So, with that being said, it’s time to start gardening – so that the love, care and nurture for your inner world starts to radiate out of you like gold.

If this is new for you, and it’s been a while since you spent some time inwards, it can feel like a daunting process. My advice to you here is to tread lightly and remember that you can tend to one small corner at a time. Nature cannot be rushed and this process should be moved through with gentleness, ease and grace.

‘Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.’ – Lao Tzu

For some, it may simply be a case of closing the eyes and connecting to the breath for two minutes a day, to start getting used to being in this space. From there, you can gradually extend your comfort zone and slowly explore the space by witnessing the thoughts that arise.

For others who feel more ready to delve in, here are a series of hard-hitting questions that you can use to self-reflect, to start to become more mindful of what’s really going on deep inside, and how you may want to move forward:

  1. What is standing between you and complete happiness?
  2. When you’re 90 years old, what will matter to you most?
  3. Standing at the gates of heaven, God asks: ‘Why should I let you in?’ What is your answer?
  4. What area of your life right now makes you feel the best? What area, right now, makes you feel the worst? Why?
  5. What piece of advice would you give 5, 16 and 21-year-old you?
  6. How do you want to be remembered in life?
  7. If money was no object, what would you be doing with your time?
  8. If life stopped tomorrow, what would you regret not doing?
  9. What are you most afraid of?
  10. What are you most proud of?

Move through these questions one at a time and spend some time with anything that comes up throughout your journey with them. You may want to meditate on them, journal around them, or discuss them with a friend or partner.

Once you witness the pieces that speak to you the loudest, you can begin to spend time with them and start to nurture your inner garden accordingly, so that you begin to plant beautiful seeds for summer.

If you’re struggling with your inner conflict at this time, or finding the process of beginning an inward journey too complex or overwhelming, a journey of 1:1 coaching may be of the highest benefit to you at this time. You can book personal appointments with me, here.

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What is Into The Light?

My Into The Light program takes you on an eight-week journey of meditation to bring you to a place of inner peace, clarity and calm, launching in January 2022.

Through a series of guided meditations that are each accompanied by simple self-reflective exercises, you become grounded, focused, relaxed and self-aware, so that you can start to move through life’s challenges with a sense of ease and control.

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