January 2023 TDM
The "New-Year-New-You" Issue
Welcome to the 45th issue of The Daily Meditator. This is your monthly resource for fun, quirky, interesting, and noteworthy happenings in and around the worldwide meditation community, curated by meditation teacher, Light Watkins and co. Our mission is simple: to help broaden the horizon of what a daily meditator looks like while providing you with relevant information and timely inspiration for staying committed to your daily practice.
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[ MEDITATION & NEWS ]
7 Wellness Trends To Try In 2023
According to Apple News, these 7 wellness trends are surging in popularity in 2023.
Sleep syncing: Sleep syncing is the practice of adjusting your sleep cycles to the circadian rhythm—meaning, you get up when the sun rises, and go to sleep when the moon sets. In other words, you’re not on TikTok until 2 am.
Sense hacking: This is the practice of stimulating your senses with colors, aromas, textures, and the like, in order to improve your mood. This may be the year to replace those black tops with more vibrant colors.
Micro workouts: These are short, low-intensity exercises that are designed to fit into your hectic day. The idea is to move a little bit every day as opposed to doing a longer workout just once or twice a week. Push-ups anyone?
Gut health: Most people don’t think about their gut until they have digestive issues. But scientists are now referring to the gut as the second brain. Which means, feeding it the right foods can nourish the gut bacteria to keep you healthy and intuitive.
Face yoga: a self-applied facial massage not only relaxes your facial muscles, but it can also improve and tighten your skin. Apparently, it’s nature’s anti-aging cream.
Meditation & mantras: we’re happy to see that good old-fashioned sitting with your eyes closed is still trending. But mantra-based practices such as Vedic and Transcendental Meditation are now being sought out by meditators who want the benefit of an anchoring device for their mind while meditating.
Sober curiosity: is drinking alcohol still a thing for some people? We’ve been on the sober bandwagon for a while, but it’s awesome to see that more people are ditching the shots and instead seeking out more natural highs.
Bottom Line: If you live in LA, you’ve probably tried all 7. But if you’re elsewhere, give one or two a try and see what sticks in 2023. You never know.
[ MEDITATION & RESEARCH ]
Meditation Is Giving Sleeping Pills A Run For Their Money
If you can’t sleep in the middle of the night, this is for you. According to healthnews.com, mindfulness meditation can be more effective than sleeping pills in some cases, but with no negative side effects. Unsurprisingly, the stress of living everyday life plays a key role in insomnia. And meditation is known as the quintessential stress-release practice. So it makes sense that regular meditation would have a positive impact on your quality of sleep.
A 2016 meta-analysis showed that mindfulness meditation led to better sleep efficiency, longer total sleep time, less time awake at night, and falling asleep faster, in over 500 sleep-deprived subjects. While researchers are reluctant to make a definitive claim about meditation being a panacea to insomnia, the data looks extremely promising. For more details, click here to read the detailed report.
Bottom line: Your body loves any and all changes to supplement (or replace) pills with a natural solution.
Kickstart your new year with an easy-to-do meditation, movement, and mindful eating challenge. Light’s 30-Day Mindfulness Triathlon is designed to help you forge the most important habits for your mental, physical, and spiritual health in 2023. If you’re finally ready to change just like you’ve been saying all year, then this is the challenge for you. Click here to join.
[ MEDITATION & SPORTS ]
NBA Coach’s Focus On Meditation Leads To On-Court Success
Looks like meditation is infiltrating the NBA. The Sacramento Bee reports that the hometown Kings are going above and beyond to protect the mental health of their players, and coach Mike Brown is leading the charge by bringing in a mental performance coach to help the team “stay present.”
The coach leads 10-minute long team-wide meditations, often after travel days to help the team refocus. The initiative is said to have raised the vibes in the locker room and the team has maintained a winning record for just the second time since their 2004 season.
Bottom line: The more pro athletes embrace meditation, the more kids all over the world will pick up the practice as an essential part of the game.
[ MEDITATION & TECHNIQUE ]
New Kind Of Meditation Helps To Shake Off Stress
Just when we thought we’d seen it all, cue shaking meditation. If silent meditation is too, well, silent, there’s a new, more active type of meditation that involves physically shaking your entire body. It’s called Shaking Meditation, which is another name for a common trauma release exercise (TRE) that helps release stress and tension from deep within the muscles. Experts claim that it’s been around for centuries, particularly in Asian, African, and Polynesian cultures, and that it’s one of the most effective methods of stress release.
To practice it, all you do is stand with your feet apart, and knees slightly bent in a comfortable position. And then, you start shaking your body gently, starting with your legs and spreading it to the arms, chest, and back. Apparently, there’s no wrong way to shake, so don't overthink it. And feel free to play some music while you shake it like a Polaroid picture. Click here for more details.
Bottom Line: Shaking meditation may be the perfect way to achieve a quick reset. But we recommend keeping your seated practice going in the meantime.
The Happiness Insiders® is a diverse community of folks who are actively engaged in cultivating real, lasting happiness through daily inner work, created and facilitated by long-time meditation teacher and inspiration author, Light Watkins. The Happiness Insiders® is the world’s first secular online community for learning a variety of practical, real-world spiritual practices that are intended to help you create the lasting happiness you ultimately desire. Click here for more info
[ MEDITATION & POP CULTURE ]
Britney Spears Has Taken Up Meditation Amid Struggling Life
“I’m that meditation bitch now.” That’s the opening line in pop star Britney Spears’ Instagram caption, announcing that she broke down and committed to daily meditation practice. Turns out, her masseuse inspired her to try it because he’s “always doing it and looks so peaceful.” Notably, she also commented that her new husband, Sam Asghari, hates her daily practice and thinks she’s gone bonkers (her words, not ours). Sounds about right when you’re the first in your family to start meditating.
Bottom line: We hope she sticks with it. As her life improves, everyone around her (including her husband) will eventually give meditation a try.
[ REALITY CHECK ]
Finding the Discipline
By Light Watkins
When it comes to New Year resolutions, consistency is less about discipline and more about honesty. In other words, how honest can you be with yourself about your temptations, your cravings, and your tendency to make up important-sounding excuses that will justify stopping?
Once you have an accurate assessment of your tendencies, you can put more realistic stop-gaps in place to hold yourself accountable, such as paying out money to a friend if you stop for any reason, or rewarding yourself after achieving realistic milestones.
Use that fine or reward to incentive you to keep going, no matter what excuses you create, no matter how tired you are, and no matter how busy you get. As you’ll soon see, with brutal honesty and the right incentives, you’ll find the discipline.
[ READ. WATCH. LISTEN. ]
Read: How to Be Love(d): Simple Truths for Going Easier on Yourself, Embracing Imperfection & Loving Your Way to a Better Life
The latest book from author & spoken word artist, Humble the Poet. How to Be Love(d) is filled with insight, advice, and personal anecdotes from Humble’s own journey. This book is a guide to self-love that helps clarify your path inward toward the inherent love and value that is within each of us. The book encourages us to throw away old ideas that prevent us from realizing the love we’ve always had within. Read more
Watch: Yoga with Adriene’s 30-Day Challenge
We are obsessed with Yoga with Adriene’s yoga videos. Join her 30-Day Yoga Journey designed for the whole body and mental health. This series is suitable for all levels and offers modifications and enhancements for individuals far and wide to practice in a way that invites transformation, healing, and strength from the inside out. Watch more
Listen: Peaceful Meditation
Peaceful Meditation is our go-to playlist on Spotify. Calming beats and melodies will surely help you clear your mind and create a sense of inner peace. If you're looking for more peaceful music to add to your rotation, check out this Peaceful Meditation playlist on Spotify
Have you listened to Light’s podcast, The Light Watkins Show? If inspiration was a drop of water, The Light Watkins Show would be like an ocean. Each candid interview is sure to leave you uplifted, inspired, and motivated to follow your heart, take a leap of faith, and believe in yourself. Listen or watch now.
[ REPORT FROM THE FIELD ]
Meditation helps me make better choices in real-time.
What have you gotten from meditation? Meditation helps me turn my anxiety into a sort of alchemy. It’s slowed down the game and always helps me make better choices in real-time.
Strangest meditation moment? The other day I was so deep in meditation that I basically passed out in such a way that my head dangled backward and hit the wall behind me. Hahaha. I’ll be meditating in the middle of the room and away from any walls from now on :)
Most unexpected benefit of meditation? Meditation helped me to have more space between any stimulus and my response. I heard about how meditation could help me feel better internally about my anxiety but it’s become one of the best ways for me to also have the capacity to course correct how I show up externally too.
[Quddus is now the Founder of Sound Sanctuary, a holistic sound therapy and meditation studio in the heart of Boulder, CO, where he’s sharing the sound experience that made the biggest difference in his life. To see his latest offerings, go to www.soundsanctuary.org]
Two of Our Favorite Instagram Accounts with a Purpose
Jim Kwik (left) is an author, brain coach, podcaster, and founder of Kwik Learning, an online learning platform. Jim had significant learning challenges as the result of a traumatic brain injury he sustained when he was in kindergarten and taught himself to read and write by reading comic books. He later taught himself to speed read. In 2001, he founded Kwik Learning and taught accelerated learning programs in classrooms and at companies until 2009 when Kwik Learning launched as an online learning platform. As of 2022, it had been used by students in 195 countries. Jim’s latest book, Limitless, is considered a must-read for anyone who wants to maximize their cognitive potential and learning abilities. Jim also is the host of the Kwik Brain podcast which is one of the top educational podcasts on iTunes. Follow him @jimkwik
Danielle LaPorte (right) is a best-selling author, motivational speaker, entrepreneur, and blogger. Her latest book, How To Be Loving is a nuanced perspective on the power of Self Compassion, shadow work, and being more receptive to Higher Guidance. Light Watkins and Danielle talked about the inspiration behind her latest book in-depth during a podcast interview. Her book, The Fire Starter Sessions is a best-seller and focuses on finding your passion in life and work— inside the system and out. Danielle developed the book from her Fire Starter Sessions, an interactive experience for corporate, association, and college groups alike. She has been featured in numerous talk shows and authored Style Statement: Live By Your Own Design which ranked as an Amazon best-seller and caught the attention of Oprah. Follow her @daniellelaporte
The most complete and true happiness comes in moments when you feel right there, completely present, with no ideas about good and bad, right and wrong— just a sense of open heart and open mind.
— Pema Chödrön