If there were a daily supplement that would offer a sense of calm, a better night's sleep, less stress, reduced anxiety and better enjoyment of everyday life, how long would it take for you to click "add to cart"? Seconds? Milliseconds?
Mothers around the world would be flocking to fill their pantries. What if we told you that these same benefits could come from 20 minutes worth of meditation every day? Suddenly, it seems a little harder. But thanks to Jacqui Lewis of The Broadplace, meditation is becoming a whole lot more accessible. No longer relegated to silent Bali retreats or quiet zen corners, Jacqui and her team are bringing meditation to the globe in a way that is convenient, relevant and best of all, highly effective. With events, workshops and courses held all over the world (including London this month!) and online, there has perhaps never been a better time (or a lack of excuse) to start incorporating a meditation practice into our everyday … And reaping those many rewards as a result. We spoke to Jacqui about meditation, what to expect, and how it can positively impact the lives of mothers when we need it most. Jacqui is also kindly offering The Grace Tales readers a 10% discount to her upcoming London course. Simply mention The Grace Tales at the time of booking to redeem your discount.
Can you tell us a little about your programs?
Our mission is to help people make progressive ongoing change for the better in their lives. We believe in meditation that actually works, gets results and that people can fit into their modern lives. With the correct training, any person, with any kind of lifestyle can practice Integrated Meditation with success to become less stressed, anxious and fatigued and more engaged, dynamic and resilient. The technique of meditation taught and practised at The Broad Place is called INTEGRATED MEDITATION (I.M). This involves a foundational Vedic Meditation practice and an ongoing education program that integrates modern neuroscience, spiritual philosophies and tools. Vedic Meditation comes from an ancient body of knowledge called the Veda. It is a technique of mantra-based meditation that can be done anywhere, anytime, for 10-20 minutes twice a day. Once learned by students, it can be practised for life without the need for anything else.
Who are they designed for?
Absolutely anyone, especially people with no prior meditation experience. We teach kids from aged 5 and our oldest student to date was in their 80s. That said, I find that the majority of students are just like Arran and me; either parents, creatives or people desiring to be their best, most creative and calm selves.
What benefits will we notice throughout (and following) the programs?
How long does it usually take for people to start noticing the benefits of meditation?
Immediately for most, and this grows and deepens the longer they meditate.
What are some tangible ways we will notice the benefits of meditation playing out in our lives?
The most common is happiness for no reason. Students begin to realise that prior to their learning and practising their happiness was always tethered to something. Now they’re just joyful. Other big ones are less stress and yelling at kids. Better digestion and physical health. Deeper sleep (so many insomniacs saved!), and more creativity, feelings of abundance and a sharper, clearer mind.
What are some of the most common misconceptions about meditation?
That it’s really hard, that you should stop thoughts, that you need to sit like a pretzel! You simply haven’t found the right technique yet if you’re not enjoying meditation. Integrated Meditation is so popular and successful with our students due to it being perfect for modern living, and additionally getting the results of increased calm and creativity as well as reducing stress, tension and fatigue. My favourite misconception is ‘I tried meditation once, couldn’t do it’. Not all meditation is created equal and most was designed for monastic life, which is clearly not what you, I and any of your readers have. Integrated Meditation slots right on in with the fun craziness of living in the present world.
What does an ideal meditation practice look like? (Time spent each day, etc?)
With Integrated Meditation we recommend 10-20 minutes once to twice a day. A full program looks like 20 minutes twice a day, but our mums are usually squeezing in 5-10 minutes whenever they can. The pregnancy and newborn program is completely different, and can be done while breastfeeding, late at night, and for as little or as long as the mama can fit it in.
What do we need to get started? Is it an amount of time, a quiet space, etc?
What are some of the most notable differences that mothers will experience having undertaken a daily meditation practice?
Less fatigue is the biggest usually! And more compassion, a calmer way of being, and my favourite, being a deeper connection to their souls and who we are. Which I felt I lost when my daughter (now 12) was a baby. Being established and grounded in who you are makes you a much more conscious mother.