A few years ago I found myself really burned out and exhausted. Everyone around me was telling me that I need to slow down before I had a complete breakdown. Of course, I am an overachiever and I did not stop to listen and I kept going. I knew I was taking on much more than I could possibly handle but I felt invincible and nothing was going to stop me. Then something changed and I felt a level of stress that I had never felt in my life. I was overwhelmed and I knew that drastic measures had to happen in my life. It was during that time that I learned so much about myself. Most of all, I learned a lot about the core pillars that contribute to an authentic life. Prayer and meditation have always been important parts of my life. However, as I worked to bring my life back into proper alignment, prayer and meditation took on an entirely new meaning.

  1. The beauty of meditation is that is allows you to declutter the mind. On a daily basis our minds are racing a mile a minute. If you are highly analytical like me then your mind is racing twice as fast. Our minds are thinking of all the things that we have to do, the things that we need to redo and the things that are often beyond our control. The more we dwell on all of these priorities the farther we drift from a place of peace and wholeness in our lives. Meditation is powerful because it declutters the mind and demands that we focus our energy only on the things that matter in our lives. Meditation is the reorganizing of the mind that serves as a catalyst to revolutionary moments. When you declutter the mind you take control of your thoughts and the cycles of your life are transformed.
  2. When you embrace a lifestyle of meditation it reduces stress. The more I make prayer and meditation a practice in my life the less stress I have. What I have come to realize is that you can only choose one thought and one emotion at a time. In other words, when we meditate it brings us into singular focus in our lives. Stress is simply dis-ease in the body that is trying to exit. Essentially, we become stressed when we allow too many thoughts to bombard the mind. The more we dwell on the dis-ease within us the more we distance ourselves from solutions. Stress is a misappropriation of mental power. Meditation empowers you to destress and discover solutions to what seemed liked an impossible situation. Instead of being stressed you need to find your place of solitude.
  3. Meditation helps you find your center. One of the problems with the world today is that we are living in a state of chaos. The souls of humanity have become cluttered and we have lost our ability to access streams of consciousness. When I found myself overwhelmed and reaching my breaking point, I discovered that I had lost my center. I lost my center by committing time and energy to activities that drained my energy and did not feed my greatness. If you are not careful you can go through life unconscious and unconnected from your authentic path. You find your center again my tapping into the heart and rediscovering the true rhythm of your life. Meditation allows you to drown out the noise of life and once again find your heartbeat. You will know you have found your center when your life gets its pulse back. Only when you are in your center will you find new power for living.
  4. Meditation brings you to a place of clarity in your life. It is a terrible thing to go through life in an incessant state of confusion. When I look at the world today I see chaos. Everybody is rushing through life. We are moving so fast but we are not living fulfilled lives. Chaos pulls you away from your center. I know that life is busy and we have many things that we have to get done on a daily basis. However, most people are completing tasks without even being conscious. Until we slow down we will never know what it means to experience a full life. Life is filled with challenges but we do not have to face those challenges without clarity. Meditation removes the fog and brings greater focus into our lives. You will not be sure about how to navigate every turn in your life but you can have sound solutions. Clarity is a divine gift that enables us to transition through life with tranquility and truths that empower us to thrive and triumph.

As I look back on that season of my life, I am so thankful that I make the decision to slow down, find my center and set new priorities for my life. Instead of focusing on how much you are getting done, I challenge you to focus on how meaningful your life is. Stop seeing life as a competition and see it as various chapters filled with exciting lessons, powerful moments and new opportunities to breathe and embrace the blessing of life.

Originally published at medium.com