The thing about challenges is that you know you will always see some form of change. And you know that the outcome is directly proportional to the effort you put into it. But what that change will look like, that you will never know in advance. And I believe, (unknowingly) deep down inside it’s that sense of mystery or hope that makes us commit to challenges.
It’s probably why I (unknowingly) committed to the 60-day meditation challenge myself.
I had been practicing meditation for more than 15 years. And so honestly, going into it I thought to myself “sure I’ll see some change, but there’s nothing I’ll discover that I haven’t already experienced before”.
And so, in my mind I was taking on the challenge more than anything to force myself to get back into a routine to meditate regularly again. Which I hadn’t managed to achieve since I became a mother 7 years ago.
But what awaited me, was an exceptionally pleasant surprise.
- The first thing I noticed after the first approximately 20 days of meditating daily, is that slowly but surely this deep sense of exhaustion I had felt for the last many years since becoming a mother had suddenly disappeared. It was 9pm and instead of only managing to sit on the couch with a blanket and mindlessly watching TV, my brain was still functioning. I could think clearly at 9PM. It was a miracle!
- Piled up laundry was something, we, as a family had gotten used to. There were days we did 7 loads of laundry in 2 days and our guest room felt like an exploded dryer with all the big sheets and the tiny socks scattered all over the room. Suddenly around day 25, I started noticing that the piled-up laundry seemed to be piling down. Eureka! I could finally see the floor on the guest room again. I had miraculously more energy for chores.
- Since I became my own boss, to-do lists were things I made on a regular basis but didn’t ever seem to have the focus to get the whole list done. I usually got to the 1 or 2 most important points and the rest just seemed to take up space on my notepad. Around day 30, I noticed I had a different focus to my work that I had not experienced for quite some time. I feel like I had gained perspective!
- Every time aunt flow visited town, I was a like a ticking time bomb. My husband could feel it coming from a mile away, and so he maintained a safe distance. Somewhere during the meditation challenge, I noticed the horribly down-ward spiraling thoughts I would have around that time of the month, didn’t seem to be spiraling down that much. Something had fundamentally changed.
- I started to notice this change basically every day. I felt calmer. The inner noise has dramatically reduced. I felt more positive. I felt more in control of my emotions and more in control of my reactions. I felt a tremendous sense of inner peace. I felt more love. It was easier to forgive and forget. I felt more gratitude.
And of course, having meditated for so many years I had experienced all these emotions before. But this time, it seemed it was here to stay. And it was then that I realized I was experiencing a newer and improved version of myself.
And so, as I inch closer to day 60, I know I’ve made a fundamental leap forward. I’ve managed to structurally fit meditation into my day…… and I’m so happy with “the new me”, I don’t ever want to go back.