Episode 28: Reflections on 20 Years of Meditation and Q&A with Emily Wilcox
A fascinating dive into why meditation works for Emily, how the results are similar to exercise, and a great Q&A session straight from the listeners!
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Once you're in the right ashana, once you're in the right meditation position, you've got your eyes closed, you've got your gaze gently uplifted to the point between the. . You can say a prayer if you want to or set an intention, but meditation does not inherently have to be religious. So you can not believe in God at all, and you can just say like, you know, I'm just looking for more peace or more joy, and that's perfectly fine.
You may discover a relationship with your higher self or with your soul or with. God source, spirit, universe in the process. But you don't have to go in with that intention and like no belief is actually required because there's actually a lot of scientific process involved in meditation.
Hello, beautiful souls. Today's episode. So, so good. And before we jump in, I have some exciting news to share. If you've ever wondered where you're blocking money, this is for you. I've created a free quiz to diagnose your money wounds so you can heal them and unblock yourself to receive more money. Just go to money woundsquiz.com and answer six quick questions to get your insanely accurate and potent results.
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Hello and welcome to the Em Makes Money Show.
This is a special episode because I'm coming to share. Just lessons and experiences and thoughts and reflections on more than 20 years of meditation. So, I don't know about you, but I still think that I'm like somewhere between the age of like 25 and 30 inside my head. And so then every once in a while something hits me and I realize that I'm a lot older than I am and the math doesn't add up in the way that I expected.
So I'm actually 37 and I started getting introduced to the idea of meditation around the age of 15 and, you know, didn't get into it. Super hardcore as a teenager, but definitely did a little bit of meditation. So I'm like, dang, okay. Even if we say I started at 17, I've been meditating for 20 years, which is just wild to me.
So I threw it out there on social media, like hit me with your questions and so many of you had questions that I will be answering inside of this. I don't have a super strict plan for this, but I wanted to just kind of like talk about the journey, how I got into it, what have been the benefits I've received, like what are some of the methods that I use.
And so basically I was raised Christian. I was raised inside of like the Methodist church and so I kind of had like, I guess like a semi traditional like American experience. Basically just like going to church on Sundays and being taught to pray. My family was not super religious, so my dad was the one that took us to church, and my mom is a self-proclaimed atheist, so she wouldn't go.
So even at a young age, I recognized the fact that like people had different beliefs. So I never felt so indoctrinated in this idea that like there was black and white heaven in hell. Like either you're saved or you're not. Save. But I definitely was raised in a Christian upbringing. You know, my dad volunteered in Sunday school and then I also had a babysitter that was a really influential person in my life.
My parents both worked really long hours, and so this woman took care of me and it wasn't like she ran a daycare center. It was like she was staying at home raising her children. And then she raised me the same way that she raised them and she grew up Christian and then went through a divorce, which, you know, I kind of had a front seat for that and, After that, she really turned to the church and she started getting into like more what I would consider like fringe Christianity, where there was a lot of like oing baptisms again, because the first time you just had the drop of water on the forehead and you actually need to do a full immersion.
So, you know, we'd all be like standing in the backyard of the pastor's house, like where they had an above ground pool watching adults get fully submersed and baptized, and there were instances of like people speaking in tongues. There was a fair bit of. You know, stuff that felt shaming and guilting to me as a child.
At least that was how I interpreted it. You know? I don't think that was how it was intended. I think these were like really good people that were trying their best, but, you know, things like, I liked reading the Goosebumps books and I was told that would put a curse on me and my family and my future generations.
It was like, ah. Well, that feels really heavy and hardcore and crap. Did I already make a mistake that's irreversible, that's going to like forever impact the rest of my family. So there was a lot of that. And then essentially what happened in my teenage years is that my dad went through his own kind of spiritual awakening and so he discovered Eastern Religion and it all started by him reading the book, autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa.
And so after he read that book, he was like, this is it. You know, this is my guru, this is my spiritual path. And so he started meditating. And because of the phase in his life, he was like pretty all in like right away. And so I'm the youngest of three girls and so I was the only one left in the house at that time.
And so he started introducing me to a little bit more eastern religion and Eastern philosophy. And so like the first book that I read was Many Lives, many Masters. And if you know this book, it was written by, I believe it was a psychiatrist, although I don't know many psychiatrists that do hypnosis, so I could be wrong.
Maybe it was a psychologist, but the guy who wrote it basically, you know, didn't, I think, didn't believe in anything, was essentially an atheist or, you know, maybe agnostic. He went to put one of his clients into hypnosis and accidentally essentially put her into a past life regression. And so she started sharing all of this stuff from past lives and he was a total skeptic. So he was like, what's happening? And, you know, started looking things up and was able to like, verify that they were historically accurate. She was able to speak languages during these regressions and, and was able to like really heal a lot of things that were still affecting her, like physically and emotionally, like in this current lifetime.
So it was interesting because it was written through the lens of like a skeptic and his journey towards belief in karma and reincarnation. And when I read that book, I was like, yep, this makes perfect sense to me. Like all of the questions that I felt like I didn't have a great answer for in Christianity.
Made sense to me through the lens of karma and reincarnation. And so I think I read Journey of Soul. I read bits of Autobiography of a Yogi. I wasn't super into it cuz like I was also a teenager and you know, I was into guys and experimenting with alcohol and drugs and partying and. You know, and also like being an A student and hanging out with friends and everything.
So, you know, it wasn't like I went on this really deep spiritual exploration, but it was like one piece of what was happening at that time. And so I started going to then like Sunday services with my dad. But now we were going to self-realization fellowship instead of to the Methodist church. And Self-realization Fellowship was founded in the 1920s by Par Mahan Yonda, who was this yogi from India, who came to the United States to essentially share the underlying truth.
Between Christianity as taught by Jesus Christ and original Hinduism as taught by Lord Krishna, and to just show like kind of the universality of all religions and to teach the science of meditation and specifically the science of Korea yog which is a type of breath work and life force control that he was initiated into by his gurus.
And that was kind of like his spiritual lineage and what he was passing along. So self realization fellowship is a church of all religions. There's chanting and meditation are a pretty significant cornerstone. To S R F. So I went there, and so I had experiences with meditation and with chanting and all of that.
If I had very profound experiences in meditation at that age, I honestly cannot recollect anymore. So it must have not been anything like crazy, crazy profound. However, I did have this like soul knowing that this was for. and so I did kind of practice on and off through my teenage years on and off, you know, through college and when I graduated and moved to California, it kind of dawned on me like, okay, I'm on my own now. You know? Even though in college I was on my own too, but like somehow I just felt like an actual adult, right? Like I had a full-time job. And so it kind of made me realize that like this was my opportunity to decide like, Am I gonna be a person that never goes to church, that never, you know, has any type of religious practice, or am I going to adopt a religious practice?
And so I decided to try going to one of the S R F temples. Out here in California. So I was living in Redlands. The closest one was in Pasadena. It was like an hour or an hour and a half drive. But the moment that I stepped foot inside of that temple, it was like a wave of peace just crashed over me, and I felt in such an elevated state being there that it was totally worth the drive. I was working six days a week at the time, so Sunday was my only day off to do laundry, to grocery shop, to relax, and here I was, you know, investing at least three hours, if not four hours, between this round trip commute and the hour-long service. So you can understand the level of commitment that took.
Now granted, it's not like I was going every single Sunday, never fail, but I was going pretty regularly. And at these services, you know, it was really only probably five minutes of chanting, maybe 10 minutes of meditation, and then there would be a monk who would actually give like an inspirational service that only happens in California.
This is like where the international headquarters is. And so there are amongst and nuns that live out here in California. But if you were to go to an S R F Temple or meditation group or Circle in other states, they would just be volunteers who would be leading the service and they would be like reading the content that's sent.
From S R F headquarters. So in terms of like the actual meditation techniques, it's a combination of breath work, a really simple breath work. So breath work's like a hot topic right now and often when you're doing breath work. under like the modern-day definition, you're usually doing like a half hour to an hour and it's a lot of like really accelerated breathing and there's these different breathing techniques that you use and that kind of stuff.
This is like much more chill than that, I would say. So essentially like I can't share all of the practices because when I'm doing the S r F practices, if you were to want to learn them, you just go onto, I think it's like yoga nanda.org and you can sign up for the lessons and they're almost free.
They just charge you the cost of printing and mailing them, but you get the lessons and it teaches you how to meditate. So they really wanna be in control of the distribution of the techniques, which I can understand because when you're talking about a teaching that like is a hundred years old here in the United States, but then goes back, you know, hundreds if not thousands of years in ancient India, you know, if just anybody's teaching it pretty soon it gets very diluted.
So. What I can share is just kind of like some of the opening techniques. So essentially you would start with getting your posture correct. So in India it's called Asana. Again, there's not just like one right or wrong way to do this, but there are things that help, right? So being in the right posture helps.
So you would sit up straight. So you want an erect spine, you want your back away from the back of the chair. You want your. Shoulders like back slightly. You want your chin paralleled to the ground. You would put your hands upturned at the juncture of the thigh and the abdomen. You would close your eyes and then you would gently lift your gaze to the point between the eyebrows.
The point between the eyebrows and the gaze is a really important part of meditation, and it's something that's not often taught when we are gently lifting the gaze to the point between the eyebrows, we are concentrating. Literally on the seat of concentration inside of our brain. So you know when you're concentrated really hard on something and your brows furrow, that's the point of concentration in our brain.
So when we gently lift our eyes to that place, it's also the center of Christ's consciousness. We're making ourselves more available for spiritual experiences. We're making ourselves more available for deep concentration. If we find with our closed eyes that our gaze drops a little bit to where the gaze is at eye level, that's when you're gonna have a bunch of crazy thoughts.
So that's like the monkey mind that many of us experience. If your gaze drops down, you'll very likely fall asleep and you'll feel super sleepy. So just checking the gaze when you're meditating is such a like life hack . It's such an incredible way to actually have like deeper, more profound experiences in meditation.
I've meditated from a matter of just a few. To doing like all day Christmas meditations where you're meditating for like six or seven hours in a day, and I've done everything in between. For most people, you really wanna go for depth first and length later, so I think that's where a lot of people get turned off to.
Meditation is they have a monkey mind. They haven't built the endurance or stamina, and they're trying to go a long time. Or an amount of time that they've set. I would start with just five minutes and like really try to go for depth. So once you're in the right asana, once you're in the right meditation position, you've got your eyes closed, you've got your gaze gently uplifted to the point between the eyebrows.
You can say a prayer if you want to or set an intention, but meditation does not inherently have to be religious. So you can not believe in God at all, and you can just say like, you know, I'm just looking for more peace or more joy, and that's perfectly fine. You may discover a relationship with your higher self or with your soul or with God source, spirit, universe in the process. But you don't have to go in with that intention and like no belief is actually required because there's actually a lot of scientific process involved in meditation. So essentially the beginning breath work that I would do, Is a technique that's called 2020. 20 breathing.
20 represents the count inside of your head, but you could change it to 8, 8, 8, 10, 10, 10. It actually doesn't matter. You just want it to be the same for all three. So essentially you would inhale, hold, exhale. and you're inhaling through the nose holding and then exhaling through the mouth, and you want all of those to be on an even count.
So you're doing that, you know, do that maybe five, six times. You could even do it 10 times. What it's doing is it's starting to get your mind concentrated on one thing, so when you give your mind a job, what you're actually doing. Is allowing all of the other thoughts to settle. And so if we think about meditation philosophically, you know, when there's a wa uh, like a glass of water, And it's like muddy water, right?
So it's like filled with dirt, and when it's all stirred up, it's very difficult to see through it. It looks really cloudy. But if you just let it sit long enough, then all of the dirt settles to the bottom and then you get clarity and you can see through the water. That's what we wanna do with our minds.
So, This type of breath work is just giving your mind something to do and all the other thoughts are settling at that time. So you can do that 20 20, 20 breathing for, you know, five to 10 cycles, and then you can do double breathing. So that's where you take a double inhale through your nose and you tense all of your muscles and you hold the tension and then you do a double exhalation through your mouth and relax.
So it sounds like this. And I'm tensing. I'm letting all the muscles shake and vibrate and then, and letting them all relax. So you can do that three to five times and then basically, After you're done with that sort of breath work, then just observe the breath. Just watch it flow in and out without any desire to change it.
And so it's like watching waves on the ocean. You're watching them come in, you're watching them go out, but, you're not trying to control the waves or change them. You're just noticing and watching. So you'll watch your breath. Your mind very likely will wander from. So you might notice an inhale and an exhale, and an inhale and an exhale, and then some period of time goes by and you realize I'm thinking about my neighbor's dog.
What the heck? Why am I thinking about my neighbor's dog? And this is where we start to go wrong in meditation because we make that mean something about us. Ugh. I'm no good at this. I suck at this. I can't keep my mind under control. How did I even get to thinking about my neighbor's dog to begin with? Oh, I remember I thought about my neighbor and then I thought, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
If you can just get rid of that. The judgment around it. You will be hugely ahead when it comes to meditating. Really? It's just, huh? I'm thinking about my neighbor's dog. Isn't that interesting? Back to the breath. Inhale. Exhale. Inhale. Okay. I'm just observing the breath again, and just do that as long as you can, and then you'll find that your mind wandered and bring it back.
You can also check your gaze at the point when you realize that your mind wandered, check your gaze, more than likely it has dropped, so you can just gently lift your gaze again and go back to it. When you get to a point in meditation where you feel a deep, profound stillness or joy or connection or love, at that point, I really like to be in receiving energy.
So as long as we're doing a breath work or we're actively observing, or if we're saying a mantra or we're thinking of an affirmation, all of that is masculine. So I do like to spend a period of time in meditation, in the feminine energy of receiving, because that's where we basically allow God, universe, or spirit to do the talking, and we're listening.
We're receiving the love, we're receiving the support, we're receiving the good ideas. . And so when you feel a beautiful state of peace or joy just sitting with it, not trying to control it, not trying to do anything, but just receiving it. Receiving it, receiving it, receiving it. And that's a great basic way to meditate.
So, my experiences in meditation overall has been so positive. I have experienced so much more joy, peace, calmness, love. It's helped me to tap back into my feelings. It's helped me to open my heart in ways that I wasn't otherwise able to access. I was really able to. Heal my relationship with Jesus, which I thought was never gonna happen because when I shifted away from Christianity, I was really pretty frustrated by that religion for a while because I just, I felt so manipulated.
I felt like I had so much shame and guilt around it that like, I just was like, ugh, to all of it. And anyhow, my relationship with Jesus was healed through meditation there. This, my intuition has gotten so good and much of that is because of meditation. So I feel like that's helped guide me through so many of life's big decisions.
And I'm gonna switch over now to the questions that people asked, cause I think that'll help lead us into more discussion. So Sharona asked, how do you keep your mind from wandering literally all over the place, ? So I did mention this a little bit, but number one, like I don't keep my mind from wandering all over the place.
Like you cannot control your thought. And even as someone who's been meditating for 20 years, my thoughts will still wander. My mind will still wander, and that's just the way it is. You know, I heard a monk say like, we can't control the birds flying over our head. But we can prevent them from making a nest on top of our head, right?
So it's like you are gonna have passing thoughts, but you do have some control over whether or not you're ruminating on them and like whipping them up and making them into a big worry, into like a big nest of other thoughts and problems. But otherwise, you will have passing thoughts. Your mind will wander.
And I think sometimes when we don't really understand what the purpose of meditation is, we think that we should be getting the result during the meditation. Now, that happens sometimes. However, I really feel like meditation is a lot like going to the gym. So every once in a while I'll do a workout and I feel like a total freaking fit badass during the.
However, most times I do a workout and I'm like, Ugh, God, I'm so weak. I'm so slow. This sucks. Why can't I go faster? My fitness is going in reverse. This is terrible. I wanna die. I just want this to end, and I don't reap the reward until later. Meditation is the same way. Every once in a while, you're gonna feel amazing and peaceful during the meditation or right after, but more often than not, you are gonna experience the results of meditation later.
You just keep putting in the reps and over time you realize, wow, I'm a much more calm person. Wow. I can access joy so much more easily. Wow. My intuition is so good. I really feel an inner knowing on what to do and not do. Wow. I'm feeling so much more expansive love in my heart. Oh, I wonder where this is coming from, and then it'll hit you.
Oh, it's because of the meditation. So it's actually perfectly fine if your mind is wandering during the meditation. Just don't make it mean anything about you. You know, I've been doing CrossFit style workouts for like seven years. If I made it mean about me that I was terrible at fitness and I sucked, and that I should just quit, you know, because I don't feel very fit during the workouts, I really would be missing the point.
But what I believe is that every workout is like making deposits into my fitness bank. And I believe that with every meditation I'm making deposits into my bank account of joy and peace and love and connection to source, connection to the higher self. Denise said, can you meditate while driving? I. I'm not aware of any meditation techniques that you can do while driving.
I think you can listen to, you know, affirmation tracks, so you might be able to do something like that. You know, I have heard some people say that they can do like some form of meditation while driving, but I don't understand what it is. The type of meditation that I do, you certainly could not do while driving.
So I guess I could do like just the breath work while with eyes open or whatever, but I don't choose to do that. So, Typically when people wanna do things while driving, it's because they're feeling like a lack of time. And so what I would just suggest is dedicate five minutes just to meditation when you're not doing anything else, and you'll reap better rewards than trying to do some type of practice while you're also driving.
Somebody said, I just realized you smoked pot. Well, I've done that before, but it's been many, many, many years now. I'm just like high on my own supply. Said, how deep have you gone with meditation? I wanna hear about the crazy stories. , so I've gone really deep. But the weird thing is, is it's really hard to know often that you've gone really deep.
So the ways that I know that I've gone really deep is I've had hours pass that felt like 10 minutes. I have had experiences, like I used hypno babies to help with my birthing, and you know, that's very much in line with like kind of being in a meditative state. And my doula came over and she thought I was taking a nap and I was actually like in transition.
So I think oftentimes without like some sort of external force, like time or someone reflecting something back to you, sometimes it's actually difficult to know like how deep you actually went. So I've had experiences where after a meditation, somebody that I was with is like, man, did you hear that crazy?
whatever, like some loud disruptive noise and I'm like, no. Like I didn't hear it at all. So, and that's like the crea yoga form of meditation that I practice is. Really about disconnecting the life force from the five senses, because that really keeps us in this human experience. And when we can withdraw some of that life force and bring it into the spine, that's where we can burn karma.
That's where we can really create more ascension and expansion. So it makes sense. I could have an experience where I didn't hear something because I'm kind of turning off the sense telephones. But that said, I've also had plenty of experiences in meditation where I have heard something or I've noticed an itch on my body or things like that.
So I don't want you to feel like you're doing it wrong if you still hear noises. But those are some of the experiences where I know that I've gone really deep as far as talking about crazy. That one's a little more difficult for me just because I've always been like kind of taught under the school of keeping your most like special sacred experiences to yourself because typically like when we share things that are really deeply sacred to us with just anybody.
It kind of like lessens or cheapens the experience a little bit. So while I have had some experiences that felt very profound to me, I almost wouldn't have the words to convey them to you. That would help you really understand what it meant. Because so much of it is a feeling and a deep knowing, like a profound sense of.
Everything will be okay. Everything is okay. Everything's perfect. Everything is wonderful. One thing I did wanna say is that I've had profound experiences in meditation using like many different meditation techniques. So although I primarily practice the S R F meditation techniques, because that's what I've been taught, that's kind of like what I subscribed to, it's what I've been doing for the most years.
I also had like a super profound experience in meditation after doing some facilitated whim H breath work, and then, Did like group silent meditation after that and holy smokes, like I went so deep, so fast, it was. Remarkably profound. I've had really deep meditations inside of like just different historical and religious sites.
So you know, I've gone to like, you know, ancient churches in Europe and even though they're not considered like places of meditation per se, I've had really beautiful, profound experiences there. I also spent four weeks in. And so I went to many sacred sites there and had super deep, profound experiences in meditation, but nothing that I would necessarily describe as crazy, so much as just feeling so in tune to my soul.
So in tune to source. So in tuned to the collective string that ties all living beings together. Lincoln ask, have you experienced Kundalini sickness or other related challenges related to your practice? And if so, how have you managed them? So if I have, I haven't been aware of it, like I haven't connected those dots, but what I will say is I think like my soul and my human have maybe made an agreement in this lifetime to do things a more gentle way.
So I'm inside of a mastermind right now. It's a business mastermind, but it's super spiritual and a lot of the women in there will go through like pretty jarring, like ego deaths and rebirths and like, where everything just seems to be falling apart or crumbling around them and things like that.
And I tend to not have that. It doesn't mean I never will, but I really get the sense that there's just kind of an agreement between my human and my soul that like we're doing things a more gentle path. And so I really haven't noticed any of that. Sometimes I'll feel more tired after some really deep, profound spiritual experiences or after a lot of meditation, and when that happens, I just feel like, you know, there's maybe a cellular uplevel that's happening, right?
There's like some new software getting downloaded. You know, my body just needs a little extra rest. But I've also had the opposite too, where like I've received so much energy and revitalization through meditation that I haven't needed as much sleep. So to asks, what have you found that's worked best for you in terms of guided or even unguided meditations?
What's the benefit been? Yeah, so I tend to do unguided meditation. However, I do really love a good guided meditation, and I feel like they were especially helpful earlier on, so, Nowadays, if I'm gonna do a guided meditation, I don't like a ton of guidance. So I might like a visualization at the beginning and then I like a long period of silence and then maybe an occasional check-in or reminder to check the gaze or an inspirational quote or something like that.
But like I don't want a ton of talking cuz it actually. The deep concentration that I already have. But when you're newer, I think it can help you go deeper faster so that you can actually get a taste of how it can feel and it can kind of just like help give you a cadence of, oh, okay, so I spend this much time in breath work and then I do this kind of visualization.
So it like gives you some techniques and kind of some timing that you can then practice on your own. . I've used like the Flourish app for breath work. Those are just like anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes of like guided breath work and then just done my own unguided meditations after that.
Self-realization Fellowship has a YouTube channel and they have I think like five or six different guided meditations that are only like 15 minutes. and they're on different themes. I like those. As I mentioned, I did that whim h guided meditation, but that was, that was actually, it was on the guided meditation.
It was guided breath work followed by just meditation, so, I think they're all good. I think it's just like figuring out what works for you and not necessarily being married to just like any one way. And let's see, there's a few more questions. Sid asks. She says, I heard attempting to meditate accumulates in your consciousness, so it's not a waste, even if you, and then it got cut off.
So Sid, I think I already addressed this, just talking about this bank account concept. It's not a. It's never a waste. Just like doing a workout is never a waste, even if you don't feel strong or fit after the workout, even if you don't feel energized after the workout. So even if the meditation felt like a waste in terms of your monkey mind or whatever you were experiencing during that meditation, it's still making deposits into your spiritual bank account, and you will find that you'll reap the rewards at other points in time. So another analogy is like being a day laborer versus like a salaried employee. So a day laborer is like, okay, I work eight hours today, pay me for this eight hours of work, right?
It's like every day you've gotta get paid for the work that you do. Whereas a salaried employee doesn't worry about getting paid every day. They just trust that the paycheck is coming every two weeks and they just do the work that's required. So when we trust that, The payout is coming that we're just making deposits into our spiritual bank account, and that when we need the withdraw, like it'll be there and that we'll reap the benefits later.
Then we don't need to be so transactional about our meditation practice. Kelly said, how do you do it properly to clear your head? Again, there's no one right way, but I did explain a little bit earlier the 20 20 20 breathing and then the double breathing with tension and then just observing the breath.
So I think that's a nice way to do it, that helps to clear your head. That allows some of. Proverbial mud to settle so that you can see clearly through the water. But even if you have a meditation where your head doesn't feel clear, you're still gonna get benefits from that. So I think some of it is just understanding that like the purpose of meditation is not that you'll be in this exalted state every time within a few minutes, and if you're not, you're doing it wrong.
More practice definitely helps and finding a technique that works for you helps as well. Fab says, what's your favorite kind of meditation? So for the most part, the S R F meditation techniques are my favorite. However, it kind of depends a little bit on the day. Like some days I feel like I want a little bit more masculine practice.
Where, you know, like my mind is being more of a pain in the ass. I might do more breath work, or I might do more affirmation, or I might do something guided because like I just need a little bit more support and calming down the mind or the human. On days when I can just close my eyes and I already feel so plugged in, I might not do any techniques at all, and I'm really just in communion.
I'm just having this conversation that requires no language between me and me. Really like the part of me that's connected to all things, and that's connected to the divine. Those are my favorites, so truly my favorite. Meditation techniques, I guess, are really no techniques at all, but I think if we don't have techniques, then it's really hard to get to a place where we don't require that level of support.
So I think that answers all of the questions. And I hope this was helpful. I guess the last thing I would say, and I don't even know how much this applies, because I feel like in recent years, like meditation has become so mainstream. Like it really wasn't 20 years ago when I started, and especially growing, you know, being in a small town in Michigan, but.
I think it has become so mainstream and accepted that people have less preconceived notions about it, or less concerns about it. But going back to my point earlier about the fact that you don't need to have any religious affiliation, or you don't need to have any belief system in place already to benefit from meditation, I think that can't be overstated enough.
Right? So it's kind of like if you decide to go on a diet, well, it might be helpful if you. And beliefs around like, oh, I really believe this diet's going to work, or I really believe that I have like the right body type for this diet, or whatever. You could also just follow the diet and then get the results.
And then after, you know, a month or two when you have the results, then make some decisions about what you wanna do. And the same is true for meditation because there have been plenty of studies done where they look at brain activity and they look at heart rate, and they look at. Pulse and breath rate and all of that kind of stuff during meditation, and there are measurable scientific, you know, like changes that happen, physiological changes.
And so even if you don't believe that it's gonna work, or you're skeptical and you don't really believe that there's any higher power, you don't believe there's anything special about you, none of that actually matters. It really doesn't matter. And what you would need to do is just try it. Say, you know what?
I'm gonna meditate five minutes a day and I'm gonna do it for a month, and then I'm gonna see how I feel. Now, if you really wanted to get fancy, you could. Give yourself a little questionnaire at the beginning where you just kind of rate yourself on like how well I'm sleeping at night, my overall positivity, my mood, my joy, my peace, my love, right?
And you can just rate yourself on a scale from one to 10 on each of those things, and then repeat it again in a month and just see. Just see like we don't have to do anything too fancy. We don't have to believe that we're communing with our higher self. We don't have to believe that this is affiliated with any type of religious practice.
Just let it be. Whatever feels good to you. For me, at the beginning, I had so much coding around the word God. I had so much coding around religion, specifically Christianity, that the idea of communing with God or with Jesus, it was just totally off the table. Cuz I had too much wrapped up in that, what it meant, what it didn't mean, whether I was being good, whether I was being bad, blah blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
Whereas like, Indian Guru Parma. I had no coding around him. I didn't already have a story in my head. I didn't already have feelings tangled and wrapped up in that. And so it was easier and cleaner for me to just be like, all right, well, let me just try out what this guy was saying and see how it feels. I didn't have to have any big belief beyond that.
So it's like if you feel a connection to Buddha, if you feel a connection to your dead grandmother, if you feel a connection to the idea of growing love in your heart, you can sort of visualize or set that intention around your meditation practice. Or you can simply meditate and then after a month or a few weeks, just evaluate the results.
So I would love to hear how this goes for you, what's been your biggest aha moment from this episode? So as you listen, as you put things into practice, please tag me at Em Makes Money and let me know how it's going so I can hear from you. And who knows, maybe there'll be a part two. All right, guys. Have a great day and we'll talk soon.
Thank you so much for listening to today's show. Changing the way we think, feel, and talk about money will change the world. I truly believe that it starts with you tuning in and it spreads when you share this show on Instagram and Facebook and tag me at Em Makes Money and you know what moves the needle the most.
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It's linked in the. Until next time, I'm wishing you health, happiness, and boatloads of money.
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