BY BY RADHESHYAM MIRYALA MD, Houston area ER physician, meditation trainer with interests in spirituality, health, and wellness, UTMB’s Family Medicine residency program graduate
Clarity is essential to making successful decisions in our personal, professional, and business dealings. Finding clarity eludes many of us in today’s overstimulated environment. Our senses are constantly bombarded by sights and sounds trying to grab our attention. In fact, our attention has become prime real estate for advertisers trying to make their way into our mind space. This relentless assault through social media, tv, radio, advertisements is diminishing our attention span. We are constantly told what to think by the world around us. Along with the overstimulation, the frenetic pace of our modern life leaves us no time for reflection on our decisions. With an ever expanding email inbox, looming deadlines, social calendars, family responsibilities, we feel pulled in many directions. How can we regain a sense of balance and clarity?
Take a few minutes to perform this thought exercise:
1) Sit in a quiet place with a pen, paper, and timer nearby. You will need to be unplugged from all distractions (no tv, no social contacts, no cell phone, etc).
2) Set your timer for five minutes.
3) Close your eyes and notice the thoughts that are coming up.
4) Open your eyes after the timer goes off.
5) Journal with total honesty all the thoughts that you recall in this five-minute time frame.
Now carefully review all the thoughts that you had. How many of the thoughts you had were original to you? How many were a byproduct of what you were influenced to think? How many of your thoughts were productive? How many of your thoughts were emotionally toxic? How many of the thoughts did you i nte nt iona l l y think of in the 5 minutes? How much of the mental chatter did you enjoy? How many of the thoughts were just random?
What if there was a way to regulate your mind better? What if you tamed your mind to think thoughts that you willed? How much more efficient would you be? How much more clarity would you have in your personal, professional, and business dealings? How do we take over the reins of our minds and control what we think?
Meditation is a tool that can help clear the mental chatter in our brain. Meditation is a tool that can help us get closer to this clarity. Meditation is the tool that can help us on our spiritual journey, a journey that can guide us to our higher selves. Many professionals have a fear about starting meditation and taking a spiritual journey, as they may be afraid of the changes that it brings along. Spirituality does not have to entail renouncing your material life to wander the earth like a hermit in robes. You do not have to seek refuge in a monastery to devote yourself to your spiritual endeavors. You do not have to commit to a life of asceticism. A meditation practice can be seamlessly integrated into your life, allowing you to live a balanced material and spiritual life.
In my personal experience, a heartfulness based meditation practice is a very efficient way of integrating meditation into our busy modern lives. A heartfulness approach takes the focus and attention from our minds to our hearts. It increases our capacity for empathy, joy, and love. It opens up the portal to experience the mystical splendor that is latent in the stillness of our hearts. We start to live life through the serenity of our hearts rather than the mental clutter of our minds. As we delve deeper into our hearts, we develop an extraordinary intuition that gives us the clarity to make more efficient decisions in life. A heartfulness based meditation practice can help us find the clarity and balance that we seek in our lives..