Krista // November 29th, 2018
Now that I meditate I feel a sense of control over myself and my life, bringing about feelings of safety and calm.
While growing up I saw adults trying to create safety for themselves by attempting to control the people and things around them. From the outside, it seemed to be an exhausting process that led to arguments, dissatisfaction and grief.
Through meditation, I came to realize that I cannot control every person and object in my view as if I live in a dollhouse, no matter how much I may want to. I’ve come to realize that life is not perfect. I am not perfect. And frankly, striving for perfection is completely exhausting.
I constantly remind myself that I cannot control the external world. I am only in charge of how I deal with it. So I continually practice choosing what I want to create in my life, the kind of people I want to spend time with, and how I want to be.
And when life throws something unexpected my way, I know I can use meditation to deal with it.
Elizabeth Stevenson // October 2nd, 2018
Before I started meditating I was confused and saddened by the state of the world. I did not understand how we could hurt each other so much, how humans were capable of wars.
As I began studying meditation, I learned that most people don’t actually want to hurt others, but their own wounds influence their actions and can lead them to do hurtful things. This understanding helps me treat everyone with love and compassion, even those who are hurtful toward me.
Now that I meditate, I feel as though my life is my own – my own to direct, my own to live, my own to experience. If something isn’t working for me I know that I have the ability to change it, instead of thinking I just have to live with it. Moving from being a martyr to someone who takes responsibility and consciously chooses her life is a big and sometimes scary change, but it’s also a huge validation of who I really am. Powerful, present and ready to go!
Now that I meditate, I’m not living for others anymore. I used to seek approval and do what I thought I was supposed to do to be a ‘good’ person. I was so caught up in this that I didn’t even know what I wanted. It was what others thought or knew that mattered.
Now I feel more balanced. I can hear and appreciate others’ opinions and I know that I can also have my own, and mine are just as valid.
Jeanine // September 1st, 2018
To be at home in my own presence is to feel comfortable giggling at a funny leaf as it falls down on my path as I walk to work.
Being at home in my life feels like living true to my inner child.
As I move through this world, I use the meditation tools of centering and present time to ensure I am at home in my own space. I aim to live in the present moment, at peace with myself, and aware of the world around me. This intent for consciousness and presence brings me a multitude of gifts.
If I am present, I can notice a small child walking toward me, holding their parent’s hand on the city sidewalk. If I smile, they often smile back. What a way to brighten everyones day! If I am present, I might spot a flower poking out from the earth in a planter. If it has started to blossom, I might even stop to smell it. What an enriching experience!
If I am present, I’m much more likely to notice a gorgeous sunset, or how the sunlight hits the glass atop that building just so. There are sights I see and moments I witness only if I am present.
Bringing more and more presence into my life has felt like the most incredible ongoing gift to myself.
Being at home to me means being present in my own space in the current moment. It is not a specific physical space, but a mental place of being aware. When aware, I feel “at home” in my life.
Elizabeth Stevenson // June 30th, 2018
I love singing and always have.
Growing up I was very shy, and felt uncomfortable if others could hear me. I sang in choirs where I could blend into the crowd, but always knew there was more to my voice than I was letting out. Truthfully I was hiding, trying not to be seen because I was afraid of being judged.
I began meditating, and over the years realized I had nothing to hide. I decided I wanted to know truly know my voice so I began singing lessons.
The lessons happened on Fridays, which I privately nicknamed ‘crydays’ because often as not I’d be in tears arriving, leaving or during the lesson. My body had a lot of emotion to express about being seen, heard and validated.
I slowly learned to let go of worrying what I sounded like. Instead of immediately evaluating what I had just done, I started paying attention to allowing the sound to just flow through me, to actually enjoying the act of singing.
This shift changed everything. My goal is no longer about producing a certain sound – it’s about my journey. And now, singing is a deeper and richer experience.
Jeanine // June 1st, 2018
I was sitting on a water taxi and talking with a friend of mine. We were both travelling to Gambier Island to spend the weekend at the Lightwork Ecovillage. And in this moment, as a wave crashed across the bow of the boat, I noticed how much meditation has changed me.
In the past, a long weekend would typically mean two nights available for partying instead of one. A long weekend might mean some chores and lots of television. Maybe, if I was able to organize it – a long weekend might mean grabbing brunch with some friends.
But now? This current version of me was excited to be spending a long weekend digging a drainage ditch, meditating, checking out the extensive garden, investigating the winter pond situation, cooking delicious and healthy meals from scratch, and enjoying time with friends.
This current version of me was able to have this weekend full of all these amazing things I love, with very little space for unconscious, zone-out time. And it’s because I love myself enough to spend an entire weekend doing things I love with people I enjoy spending time with. I love myself enough to eat healthy, embrace exercise, and spend downtime watching the world around me.
Meditation has given me this great gift of an increased ability to have more of what I love in my life, and less of what I now identify as “painkillers” (rather than joy-givers!). I don’t need to binge watch an entire season of something to avoid my life and forget about the things I don’t like. I don’t need to drink large amounts of alcohol to interact with other people. I don’t need to feel lucky I shared a single meal this week with friends.
And getting off that water taxi? It felt like the life I’ve always wanted was in motion.
Krista // May 4th, 2018
Before I started meditating I was filled with anxiety. I remember saying to a friend, “I am nervous all the time.” I said it to this particular person because I looked up to him and wanted guidance. His response was, “I think most people are nervous all the time.” And that was it. There was no offer of a solution, tip, guidance, or promise of a different way. I was being told in that moment that nervousness was problematic but essential to the human experience.
Upon hearing his response my puzzler was puzzled, but I knew deep down there was more to this story. I was to keep searching until I found a new way, a different way, an alternative to constant worry, concern and stress.
And thankfully I did find it!! When I first started meditating I remember I started to feel different immediately. I was experiencing sensations in my body that I wasn’t used to. I started to feel what I was like, what life was like outside the perpetual anxiety. I had been practicing worry for 24 years and was determined to try something new!
Now, at this point in time, I have been meditating for 17 years. I feel like over those years, it has been a process of whittling down the amount of time I spend worrying. Do I still have worries? Yes! Are they there all day everyday? No! The worries are there sometimes and when they are they are much much quieter, taking up way less energy and space in my life. I continue practicing the new way, knowing with diligence, one day worry may be a distance memory of the way I used to be.
Until then I keep whittling…
Julia T. // April 1st, 2018
I saw the best shirt of my life in 1987 when I was 8.
It was a black T-shirt. The sleeves and the bottom were fringed, making it totally tough-looking. But what really intrigued me was the message on the front, in cursive font: “If you love something set it free. If it comes back it’s yours, if it does not come back it was never meant to be.”
So intriguing! My 8-year-old brain started to play through scenarios of what this could possibly mean. If you took the leash off of a dog, and it ran away and never came back…it was not meant to be, so just suck it up? I asked my mom who didn’t seem to have a satisfactory reply. I wondered, who would wear that shirt? So hardcore.
Fast-forward 30 years to today. Would I wear that shirt? I’d have to consider it. I may need to wait another 30 years before that wisdom fully soaks in. Don’t get me wrong I like idea of fringe. But what does it mean to truly set something free?
It makes me think of a technique I learned in Lightwork Level 1 Meditation. The technique is about consciously creating what you want. In last part of the technique you use the following message, “I would like this to be manifest if it is of my highest integrity and the highest integrity for all.” You hold the intention of creating the thing you want only if it won’t harm you, or anyone else. Then you completely let go of attachment. It feels so good to let go in this way.
I remember when I first moved to Vancouver I was looking for a place to rent. I did the conscious-creating technique in meditation, including that last crucial step of letting go. That weekend my roommates and I looked at two suites. One had such a horrible stench we could barely make it through the tour. Nope. The other was lovely. Wood floors, fireplace, great location. We put in our application. And waited.
The landlord said no. Application rejected. Somebody else got that beautiful place. We were so bummed! Where would we go? Not the stench place? Noooo.
I kept having the feeling I should walk down 3rd Ave, and sure enough, there was another suite for rent on that street. A little mountain view, reasonable rent by Vancouver standards, a newly renovated kitchen. This place was great! We said, “We’ll take it!” and the landlord agreed.
A few weeks later, I walked by the beautiful place we didn’t get. I could smell the fire before I saw it. The neighbouring house had burnt to the ground and ravaged the surrounding homes, including the suite we had admired but not secured. I could see directly into the suite, as the fire had eaten right through the walls. It was shocking. I was stuck with the knowledge that I had so wished for that suite, and now I was so grateful I didn’t get it.
It was a good reminder that sometimes even though I may really want something, but there may be more than meets the eye as to why I can’t have it. I’ve learned to trust the process, and allow myself to just let go.
Tiffany // March 1st, 2018
About 10 years ago now, I moved to Vancouver from a northern Gulf Island. I was coming out of a tumultuous time; it was the end of a relationship. I was full-on soul searching and making a major course correction in my life. I was ready to let go of pretty much anything that stood in the way of finding a renewed sense of myself.
I moved to Vancouver to take the Lightwork Level 4: Transformation program. I felt hopeful about this decision and other big changes I’d made; I landed a new job and scored a great apartment, seemingly overnight.
Settling into the city felt like taking a plunge into a deep sea. It felt rattling, relentless, unfriendly and cold. I missed the green and wild of island life.
I couldn’t get over the realities of city-living, like hearing the pedestrian walk signal from my apartment, and feeling the thick concrete floor always beneath me. It was a new and different place to call home. And while I had deep sense that I would find my way, it was definitely one of the most uncomfortable times of my life.
In retrospect, I now understand the enormity of what that move represented. I was basically laying it all on the line, spiritually speaking. I needed answers to some important questions that had been plaguing me, and a way out of an unhealthy relationship pattern. I was doing major repair work, and everything in my life was changing around me. I was in the throes of an intense transformation.
At times I felt raw and vulnerable. Sometimes uneasy. Sometimes emotional. Yet simultaneously more comforted, more at peace and more free.
At some point, I realized that I was out of the woods, so to speak. And I was ready to give back. This was a wonderful shift.
Skip ahead to present time and my life feels quiet, strong and settled. I see now that it’s hard to witness one’s own transformation while it’s underway; it’s hard to know that it’s actually happening. But with commitment to a healing path, change does happen and pain is alleviated. It just takes a little while sometimes.
Now, as one of the Lightwork staff, it gives me great joy to teach meditation classes and give energy healings to others. This past year I’ve had the honour of assisting the current Level 4: Transformation students as they dive into their own self-healing journeys. What a thing, to see the process full-circle, and now be in a position to offer support. I am immensely grateful. I can’t think of anything more satisfying.
Jacqueline // January 31st, 2018
It was the end of my work day, and I needed to rush out the door to make a class. I’d been reconciling a project budget all afternoon, but the figures on the spreadsheet just weren’t adding up. The final budget was due on my boss’ desk the next morning. I felt the pressure rising up within me – I was getting irritated and upset that I couldn’t find the error.
That’s when I noticed that I was in a state of effort and resistance. So, I closed my eyes, sat back in my chair, took a deep breath, and centered myself. I grounded and shifted into a state of flow. I reminded myself that everything can be done from a state of ease or effort. I had been attempting to solve the problem using effort, and clearly it wasn’t working.
I asked myself, what if I tried again from a state of ease and flow? I let a smile grow on my face and I felt the tension leave my body. I opened my eyes and calmly gazed at the spreadsheet. I immediately saw the formula error and corrected it in seconds.
I couldn’t believe it! My own fears of failing had clouded my mind, blocking my ability to see clearly. A simple 1-minute meditation reset and I was operating from a clear place again.
Since then I regularly use a 1-minute meditation as a reset technique along with the powerful question, “What would it be like if this easy?”
Leslie Dickout // December 31st, 2017
Life in North America is designed to be busy. We are expected to fill our time
with work, friends, family, social media, travel, and a host of other activities. I
believed for a long time the fuller my life was, the richer my experience of life
was. And although I have no regrets, I recall the moments when I thought my
life was at its “richest” and still there felt like something was missing, or that I
wasn’t truly happy.
Meditation has allowed me to make room for what was missing…simplicity.
Calm. Presence. Me. Instead of filling my time with more and more, the most
fulfilling thing I do is the same meditation each day that brings me back to my
centre, to my grounding, to that quiet yet alive place that is me. It’s a kind of
fulfillment I have only dreamed of.
Experiencing life from this place has made everything I do throughout my days
that much richer. From taking in the changing leaves on the trees in autumn to
having conversations with loved ones, interactions with colleagues, or time by
myself. Being more present in each moment, and letting that be enough, has
allowed me to feel the true richness of my life.