There hasn’t been a huge change in the way I Life Coach now as opposed to when I first became certified back in 2005.
I tend to need less sessions with clients these days to help them achieve the results they want, but I think that’s just a product of experience and knowing if and when I can take short cuts.
Probably one difference is now I rarely skip talking to clients about meditation. I’m not evangelical about it and I certainly don’t want to push it (or anything else for that matter) on people who are totally resistant.
However, I’m keen to know whether clients practice or have ever considered practicing meditation.
I find most clients are at least somewhat curious, open-minded and interested in learning more about the process, but every now and then I get responses like the ones listed below and I know I’m up against it.
1. I Can’t See The Point
Well let me just tell you some of the benefits that are scientifically proven.
- Improves mental health and can improve depression
- Improves physical health
- Lowers stress levels
- Improves ability to deal with stress when it arises
- Improves cognitive function
- Improves satisfaction with life and thus happiness levels
- Lengthens life
Can you see the point now, or do none of those things look attractive to you?
2. I Don’t Know How To Do It
You know how to breathe don’t you? Well you know how to meditate then.
- Sit on the floor
- Focus all your attention on your breath coming in and out of your nose
- Wonder where the hell all those random thoughts just came from that weren’t there before
- Re-focus on your breath
- Rinse and repeat for the next 40 years
There are (probably) thousands of websites, many of which are free designed to help you with your meditation practice. Go and do a bit of research and maybe start off by checking out Wildmind
3. I Don’t Have Time
Firstly, you really do need to read my post A Big Fat Lie You Tell Every Day, because you absolutely do have time. You don’t have to block out an hour a day, even 10 minutes is far better than nothing.
In fact Buddhist teacher Bodhipaksa has a CD called “Guided Meditations For Busy People’ (al) and the longest meditation on there is less than 10 minutes.
So if you really think that’s all the time you can spare to get the benefits of #1 go and buy it.
Tell me you don’t want to make time for some other reason and that’s cool, it’s your decision. But please be aware of the real reason because you absolutely, positively, definitely, do have time!
Note: I will be happy to mail my copy of the Bodhipaksa CD mentioned above to the first person (presuming they live in the US) that leaves me a comment telling me they’ve never tried meditation but are prepared to commit to it for one month.
4. I Tried It Once And Nothing Much Happened
No shit? I have heard that, or something similar, on several occasions. It’s a little bit like saying I went to the gym once and when I got home and looked in the mirror I hadn’t developed a 6-pack.
Meditation is like the gym for your mind.
Even though I have had many clients who have seen very rapid benefits (within the last 2 weeks I have had 2 clients that felt great after one session). I have also had others that have taken a while longer before they started to see a discernible difference.
You have to commit. If you don’t want to commit, that’s cool, but let’s call a spade a spade, huh?
5. I Feel Silly
Lame, lame, lame!
Nobody is asking you to shave your head, don a saffron robe and sit in your front yard cross-legged chanting an Om meditation as people drive home from work.
If you feel self conscious do it at home, or go somewhere where nobody will see you. If you have family members that will laugh or ridicule you, refer them back to point #1 and then put an ad on Craigs List for a new family.
6. I Always Fall Asleep
Why do you think experienced meditators usually sit upright? Unlike self-hypnosis, meditation is active and not passive.
If you’re prone to nodding off at the drop of a hat, don’t do a lying down meditation!
Better still, and presuming you don’t suffer from narcolepsy, do a walking meditation. Yes, walking meditations really do exist and they’re really cool.
A lot of people prefer to meditate first thing in the morning because they are then less likely to fall back to sleep. I have to say I don’t like this, but I think I’m in the minority.
7 It’s Boring
Ironically I would say the more boring you find meditation the more you will benefit from it in the long run.
You’re bored because your mind is on a mission to make you bored and wants instant stimulation/gratification because that’s what you have trained it to want.
So let me know in the comments if you already meditate, if not, what’s stopping you, any of the above?