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ASU Attempts: Meditating for a Month

At first, I was hesitant about meditating. Sure, I definitely have my share of anxiety, stress, and panic attacks, and well, we get the picture. But all I kept thinking when I was told I had to meditate for 30 minutes everyday for a whole ass month was about that one time in PE when I had to do yoga and I almost died from how hard it freaking was. As usual though, I was wrong. No surprise there. Meditating is actually one of the greatest things I ended up trying and continue to do now and again.

It started by using this app called Insight Timer. Sounds weird but trust me, this thing changed my mind about everything. A lot of other apps required you to end up having to pay for certain features or get an actual good experience so eventually I turned to this one. Which was pretty damn awesome.

Slumber Cloud Knowing I had problems with sleep (too much thinking, it’s always the thinking!) I decided to schedule my meditation sessions before I went to bed. Also that was my only free time, so score.

The first time was holy crap amazing. No joke. At first having my legs crossed on the floor with a pillow and doing the whole “hummm” pose was strange and kind of stiff but eventually when I put on a session with some guy talking to guide me through, it was just so...peaceful. His voice was very calming and his metaphors were so helpful. I remember when he asked me to imagine my thoughts as leaves that are all flowing away in this little stream as I feel the wind and hear the sound of water. Maybe it helped that I had a good imagination but boy, did it work.

Eventually I would have moments where I would concentrate so deeply into his words, it felt like I was sleeping while sitting up, forgetting where I was or what I was doing. It was like a weird peaceful darkness that I could just fall into calmly like a new bed (those are always good).

After I was done with my 30 minutes, I felt weirdly relaxed. Like physically okay as if the weight I used to have just disappeared for that night. Sleep came easy and my mind felt like I was in a good head space. I realized then that maybe this wasn’t going to be so bad. And it wasn’t.

a pink neon Max van den Oetelaar | Unsplash Throughout the month, I soon turned to sleep meditation because this would allow me to sleep after or during the session (the app having a timer to allow you to pick when to stop) which happened every time. There are options to only hear music or actually have someone guide you and usually I picked the latter. The coaches had gentle voices and their words were relaxing and sometimes even inspiring.

That was the cool thing about the app, it allowed me to pick what I felt I needed, meaning some sessions focus on stress or getting better sleep or gaining confidence. It was a great variety and for sure, especially on my hardest days when all my brain wanted to do was pick, prod and freak me out, sleeping meditation would ease those worries. I needed that and even now, when I don’t need to keep continuing this habit, I choose to do so. I still have sleeping problems and so far, this helps. The weight of fear and anxiety is a little less heavy now. For once, I can breathe at night.