My meeting ran late, so I’m pulling into the parking lot 10 minutes late for an introductory talk about Transcendental Meditation (TM). The talk is being given at the Green Square Integrative Health Care Center. Along with TM, there are several other unique practitioners such as counseling hypnosis, body talk therapy, reflexology, acupuncture, functional medicine, just to name a few. I quickly look through my email for the floor and room number. I follow the directions and hop in the elevator from the main floor to the lower level. A sign in the elevator reads (slow but safely, travel time from main floor basement takes 30 seconds). My initial reaction was anger since I was already late, but it quickly made sense in a place like this. Patience….
I walk into the room and there is a couple on a couch and two other individuals assume are the instructors. A tall slender woman with white hair in what appeared to be a side pony tail. And an older Jewish man, who looks just like a rabbi out of a film, which he even noted himself. 2 years ago, I would have never had the confidence to show up at a place such as this, but here I was.
MY HISTORY WITH MEDITATION
I have been meditating using Vipassana/mindfulness on and off for about 2 years now and have had great success with it. I have seen a reduction in overall stress, improved sleep, anger management, increased motivation and energy, and an overall improvement in day to day functions. Listening to the podcast The Tim Ferriss Show, I have learned that numerous world class performers use meditation regularly. TM is the form of meditation that Tim uses himself and has great success with. I then found out that Jerry Seinfeld has been practicing TM for over 40 years, so I was sold.
BENEFITS OF TM
We discuss the benefits of the TM technique, what happens when you meditate, how TM works, why it works, how it is different from other techniques of self-development and where it comes from. They went on to say that The TM technique is a simple, natural, EFFORTLESS mental technique practiced twenty minutes twice a day. It provides benefits in all areas of life including reduction of anxiety and stress, fuller development of mental potential, and significantly better health and longevity. People actually live longer! These benefits have been documented in over 700 scientific studies.
Having a scientific background, I am impressed of the magnitude of current and future research on the effects of TM. They are currently implementing TM in underprivileged schools, with veterans suffering from PTSD, people suffering from cardiac disease, along with other areas and having great results. The American Heart Association came out with a study that TM significantly reduces high blood pressure, risk of stroke, and mortality rates.
THE NEXT STEP
After one hour, the instructors finish. Now it is time to decide whether I should continue with individual sessions to learn TM. The cost is steep, but not unreasonable. Being a healthcare provider, having a referral from a healthcare provider, someone with financial hardship, and full time students you will get a significant discount.
I wanted to start the 1st class that night, but unfortunately, I will have to wait a week until there is time available in the instructor’s schedule. It is required/highly recommended that you meet 4 days consecutively. I am disappointed I now must wait a week, but I am also very excited to get started.
In starting TM, my hope is to build a long-lasting routine that improves my creativity, mental clarity, reduces decision making fatigue at work and enhance my overall mental health. Updates to come!