By Andrew Shykofsky
By now, it is accepted that seeing a caring trained counselor to hear your story and offer feedback is a vital part of spiritual and emotional healing. One thing many therapists have discovered is that meditation in conjunction with therapy can have exponentially beneficial effects.The reason meditation works well with therapy is that through the process of going within, you are able to see more clearly the root causes of certain behaviors. Therapy can be amazing for providing insights on what aspects of one’s life are difficult and why certain emotions get triggered when they do. Owning these insights meaning taking full responsibility for the fact that they exist can take time.
It’s one thing to have a therapist tell you the reason you feel this way or what belief is underlying a difficult situation. It might make sense to the mind but emotionally we often resist these truths. We resist them because they create a pressure to make changes which means work, and often disruption. The ego in us which seeks to maximize ease and pleasure in our lives can block the realization of these insights. In other words, we consider what we heard but we may not be ready to act on it just yet.

Through a particular process of contemplative meditation (meaning a style that encourages inner reflection and not just a stilling of thoughts), the critical over-active mind is naturally subdued. The tendency for chronic worrying and redundant regurgitation of negative thoughts can be disciplined and something wonderful emerges. A mindset becomes evident that allows for clarity and insights to flow very freely.

This is the state of meditation where real transformation occurs. The anxious worried mind is ignored and the reasoning mind is honored. When this occurs, thought is slowed down and as a result, we are able to see ourselves much clearer. This means that things our therapist shared with us that we haven’t been able to integrate all of a sudden make perfect sense! When you really get it, the change you are hoping for becomes a reality. In order to develop to the point where this is possible, one simply needs to learn a contemplative meditation style and then practice regularly. It involves recognizing the pressures created by your mind and emotions and instead of being pulled into a swirl about the challenges you face, dropping a level deeper and exploring the truth from a higher consciousness.

This might sound daunting but in fact is relatively simple. Each person is perfectly equipped for this type soul exploration. In short order, you will see your life in a truer light and this accelerates your healing. Find a meditation practice and get started.

Andrew Shykofsky is the owner of meditate – Yoga and Meditation Center in Chicago. He has over 3 decades of meditation experience and 10 years experience teaching meditation.
Visit www.meditatecenter.com for information on courses. Andrew can be reached personally at andrew@meditatecenter.com