Staff News

Meditation? Reluctance disappears with a good night’s sleep

July 30, 2015 by Massiel Perez-Calhoon

As a Brandman University Wellness Committee member, I have advanced notice of events or ideas we are interested in pursuing for the Wellness Program.  When in a Wellness meeting, it was brought to our attention that the next “Wellness Challenge” would involve meditation. Just hearing the word “meditation” made me cringe in my chair.

After much success with the Walking Challenge, I expected to just have another walking challenge.  I reminded myself that there are three pillars of wellness to our Wellness Program: move, nourish, and reflect. I quickly put myself in check and put on my listening hat.

In the meeting, I heard phrases such as:

  • “Legendary spiritual and self-help speaker, Dr. Deepak Chopra has partnered with Oprah Winfrey”
  • “Free 21-Day meditation experience”
  • “Daily guided audio meditations”
  • “Manifesting grace through gratitude
  • “Utilizing conflict-resolution techniques can lead you to a more peaceful lifestyle.”

Trying to digest everything, I hear the last words, “embrace something new with your Brandman colleagues.”

In my head, I was saying:

  • I love Oprah but, who the heck is Chopra?
  • Free, 21 days…free is good. Twenty-one days…anything can be done for 21 days.
  • Daily guided audio meditations? Umm, okay 21 days can pass quicker if they are daily right?
  • Grace and gratitude, I can always use that
  • Conflict-resolution…more peaceful lifestyle.

I walk out of the meeting coaching myself and thinking, “Come on, Massiel, 21 days and you’re supposed to be a champion.”

Fast forward … after the Walking Challenge with the Fitbit and realizing how little sleep I was getting a night, week and month, this was a no brainer. I need meditation. My body craves it. I’ve tested the waters with a yoga class here and there but never followed through to actually meditate by myself.

Since I started the challenge, I have to admit that the first few days I would listen to the meditation audio in my car or at my desk and not fully engage. The next day I started to listen to the audio right before bed, I didn’t even last the whole 20 minutes. I guess I fell asleep within the first eight minutes.

The next day, the same thing and guess what? The third day … yup, same thing.

I feel that the wise words of Dr. Chopra manifest in my conscience and this allows me to be in a pensive state of peace while I connect his words to my life. Feeling gratitude and being present has given me energy to become the best version of myself (also known as, more sleep).  Brandman’s Meditation Challenge has revealed a state of being that is life-affirming for me and where I am today.

Through this opportunity, I have been able to discover the purpose of meditation and feel that this is a tremendous value to my fast-paced life style. I need to stop and value myself more and give my state of being time to rejuvenate, reflect, grow and be mindful. This way I can give every day my maximum potential.

About the author

Massiel-PerezMassiel Perez is making the transition from admission to academic advising at Brandman University’s Irvine campus. She’s also a member of the Wellness Committee and will be joining others in Irvine for the next Wellness event, fitness classes every Tuesday and Thursday from 12:10 to 12:50 p.m. Total body workouts will be offered on Tuesdays and yoga on Thursdays. Other campuses will be offered other options soon, she said.


 

Brandman Voices shares submitted content from faculty, students and staff; from op-ed pieces to scholarly articles, this section is dedicated as a platform for the members of the Brandman University community to share thoughts, opinions, ideas and more. To submit an article, email us at news@brandman.edu DISCLAIMER: the opinions represented in this section are solely those of the individual author, not Brandman University.

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