by Eve Baronius: I’m assuming that you, much like me when I started, know how much potential this work has got for your inner growth…
If you have done it for a while I bet you have experienced major changes for yourself from it. Maybe the voices in your head that used to scream loudly before are just not there. If you are completely new to this work or considering starting, you may feel that there is major potential here. I want to encourage that feeling and tell you there is. Let me tell you a bit about my own journey.
My life has changed from the self mastery work. I am not the same person who started in 2015. The first changes happened quickly. After just a few weeks the panic attacks, that used to visit me frequently, stopped. Feeling that I had an understanding of what was going on inside took away a lot of the anxiety I had about my reactions, fears and thoughts. That was huge. Panic attacks had been there for a big part of my adult life and now – nothing. It gave me motivation and momentum to continue. I wanted more of that calmer, joyful state I was just starting to taste, in fact, my soul was craving it and I had found a practical approach that step-by-step would give me more of that. I was onboard.
As the journey continued with me doing both the self mastery courses here at pathwaytohappiness.com and going to retreats, I continued to have big shifts in my inner world. The process of distancing myself from my thoughts and instead of believing them start identifying the foundation of unconscious beliefs they were created from was very empowering. I could open the hood of the car, take apart the engine, and see how everything was working. I could start working on the engine itself, instead of being surprised over a warning light on the instrument panel or a weird sound inside the car and rush to the mechanic to have it fixed. Some things you want professionals to fix, like a heart attack or a nuclear power plant, but when it comes to yourself and your inner world – shouldn’t you be the expert?
The process felt brutal at times. Pockets of buried emotions opened up and I was at the hands of waves of emotions that I had been scared of feeling my whole life. But I was given a hands on process to be with them and releasing them. Crying on the kitchen floor in fetal position was apparently the new normal. Knowing that others had done it before me and come out on the other side helped. And this was a different kind of crying. It wasn’t indulging from a victim state and believing a story, it was letting a bunch of wild horses free.
As I got deeper into the practice I started noticing that the more I let go of emotions and beliefs, the more room was inside of me. Room for enjoying the moment, room for being silly and playful, and room for creation. The more I followed the formula of taking apart my old program of beliefs, the more I became the captain of my own ship (I know, it was a car before, but just roll with me here). I got more and more in tune with what I needed for my process and could start making adjustments and add ons to Gary’s practices. For example I explored and practiced a lot of different meditation techniques.
And boy, did that accelerate my practice! If I had to summarise the benefits from it into one point it would be: by sitting down in silence and observe you will get a clearer view of what is going on inside. There are other benefits that I have learned along the way and I will list them for you here, as best I can and understand.
Benefits of meditation for your self mastery practice
1. Exercise your focus
Most of us live our lives having our attention being pulled along between external objects, thoughts, feelings and experiences. The training we do have with focus is often associated with discipline and connected in our minds with something boring and punishing. But our attention is a super-power we were born with that decides our experience of the world. It’s an underdeveloped muscle that you need to practice at the gym to make stronger. It might seem impossible in the beginning but your ability to stay focused will grow quickly and you will feel the benefits in many parts of your daily life.
- Focus on one specific thing for a longer time, for example your breathing to help calm yourself
- Not getting pulled along by a trail of thoughts, or your inner judge, without noticing
- Stay focused to go deeper into your unconscious and release core beliefs or stored emotions
- A more present friend/partner/parent and a better listener
2. The experience of yourself as more than your thoughts
As you go deeper into your meditation practice you learn to distance yourself and observe your thoughts. Making that separation – that the thoughts are something happening inside of your being, and not you being them – makes a huge difference when wanting to shift them. When you start to experience more parts of your being you can notice when you shift between different perspectives. You might also come to realize that you are consciousness itself. Not as a conceptual idea but as something experienced.
- Removes layers of shame and stress about your thoughts
- Helps with developing compassion and curiosity towards your thoughts, instead of desperately wanting them to go away
- A deep sense of connection to a Self other than the mind
- Believing less lies and experiencing life more as it is
3. Calming your nervous system
When we want to make change we need to build a good foundation to do it from. If you’re in a stressful state of fight-or-flight, your body and mind are not prepared for change. Your thoughts will be impulsive and jump around. You will feel a need to react to them and it’s hard to sit and go inward. That’s completely natural. If you are in stress your body is focused on surviving – not on recharging or building new neural pathways. In order to start making changes to an old program of beliefs you first need to activate your parasympathetic nervous system and train your brain to go into alpha brainwaves.
- Crucial for making inner changes
- Helps you shift into a relaxed state faster and more easily
- Easier to be present in the moment
4. Accessing your unconscious for real change
Similar to the previous point – if your brainwaves are in high beta (which is the normal busyness of the mind during the day) you will not have access to your unconscious where your beliefs are stored. In a stressed brainwave state you are playing by the programmed beliefs, and to observe and shift them will be very challenging. Training your mind to shift into different brainwave states without falling asleep or feeling restless or bored will be a tremendous help. The access to your unconscious opens up in lower brainwaves, and that’s where you will change your beliefs for real.
- Getting to stored emotions that needs releasing
- The ability to recognize and move between different brainwave states
- Experience real shifts to your beliefs
5. Be able to tell sensing from thinking
This might seem like an obvious one at first glance – but very few people can tell a thought from a feeling if they haven’t practiced sensing in the body. When you learn to separate thinking from sensing and strengthening your connection with your body a whole new world will open up to you. A world beyond, or before, labelling of experiences, a world before language. A more true experience of reality. This is also a way into the unconscious and of being with what is.
- Experience the world as it is, beyond words
- Quiets the internal chatter
How do I start, or go deeper?
Depending on how our mind has been programmed it might seem challenging to take up a meditation practice in the beginning. The mind doesn’t want you to slow down and may respond with feeling anything from restlessness or boredom to anxiety and even panic. It’s important that you understand that this is a completely natural response. Your mind is protecting you from something that seems threatening to it – which is to let emotions come to the surface or relax your nervous system. If the mind has been programmed to believe you need to be in a stressed state to feel safe it will have objections to you trying something new. This is where you need to take charge. Not in a overriding and forceful kind of way bit in a grounded way. You know that this is a long term benefit for you and you are playing the long game. Instead of overwhelming your system with pushing too hard you can find the right balance where you slowly build a practice in manageable portions. That balanced approach will make you feel you are succeeding instead of failing.
Want guidance on how to get started or go deeper?
I have recorded two guided meditations and put together a guide on how to overcome resistance with meditating. It’s made for you who would like guidance on how to work past resistance and shift limiting beliefs around meditation.
I hope that this article has given you some insights on how meditation can help you move forward in your Self Mastery practice! Feel free to reach out to me if you have questions. You can find my contact info here or connect with me on Instagram here.