Group meditation is never something that I thought I’d be into. I was a private practice, alone, sacred time all by myself kind of human. And to be honest, I didn’t really get the idea behind group meditation. If meditation is something that happens between you and your brain, what did you have to gain from meditating in a group?
I can tell you the exact moment that this changed for me. I was in Thailand and I was watching a group of monks meditating together. They were all in their own private meditations but I can’t even begin to describe the energy that was created by a huge group of people meditating at the same time. I still get shivers just thinking about it. It was around that time that I started to realize there might be something to that whole group meditation thing after all.
Fast forward years later and Amanda and I were both struggling to work through some big life changes. We started meditating together on the farm where I have my little herd of rescue horses. And again I felt that feeling of the sum of two people meditating together to be much greater than just one person on their own. It felt special, and Wellness on the Farm was born.
And maybe you’re like “that’s great Kristen, but I don’t know any monks, and I don’t have horses, what can group meditation do for me?” Here are the top five reasons why we think you should give group meditation a try.
Accountability! It can be really difficult, especially when you’re starting a practice to hold yourself accountable. We speak from experience when we say that you can have the best of intentions, yet somehow things just get put to the back of the list - things like your newly minted meditation practice. Finding a group of people and committing to show up can be really helpful when we need a little push to be accountable. Your mind will thank you for it.
Knowledgable teachers can help you navigate some of the common things that people get hung up on in their practice. You can watch a lot of YouTube videos but you still might have some questions. And a lot of the time, people aren’t posting about all of their struggles online. So it can be really nice to have some suggestions from real people, trained in the thing that you’re trying to learn, to help you navigate your practice.
Like-minded humans are awesome! Most people join a meditation group because they are interested in starting or improving their practice, as well as their mental and physical health. Over time, you might just find out that they have some of the same struggles as you too. It’s a great place to meet and connect with people. It can also be a really beautiful place to feel supported if you’re having a bit more of a difficult time.
You might learn something new that you never even knew you liked! By checking out a meditation group, you might learn about a new style of meditation, a new breath work pattern or a new flow that you really like. Often, as humans, we like to stick with what we know and what is familiar - getting out to a meditation group is a great way to get yourself out of a funk and onto exploring something new and exciting.
Bask in the glow of a group of people all meditating together. Really. I’m serious. There is something so magical and amazing about a group of people meditating together that you should really experience. I can’t even accurately explain it. That energy is contagious. And freaking awesome. And really healing.
Are you starting to think a meditation group might just be something you need to check out for yourself? People often say they feel a bit anxious about heading out to a meditation group for the first time - they’re not positive what to expect, what people are going to be like, or how they’re going to like it. Just know you’re not the only person to feel that way!!
If you want to check out a meditation group, but are dealing with some nerves around it, there are some things you can do to feel more comfortable.
Commit to just one class, let yourself test it out. If you don’t like it, no big deal, you don’t have to go back!
Check and see if the group has social media. If so you can take a peek and get a bit of an idea for the climate of the group, the energy around the people that are attending etc.
If not knowing exactly what to expect is hard for you, reach out to the teacher(s) ahead of time. Asking them to run through what a group meditation looks like is totally reasonable!
A lot of meditation teachers have meditations up on YouTube. See if the teacher from the group you’d like to attend has a youtube channel. This way you can familiarize yourself with with their style and see if it works for you.
Reaching out to ask about things like parking, accessibility, content, what to bring, what to expect should be totally fine. If someone gets frustrated by these questions, they aren’t the teacher for you!
Bring a friend along with you!
If you have questions or comments about the meditation that you don’t feel comfortable sharing after the class, you can always reach out in a message afterwards <3
Hopefully this is helpful for you and inspires you to try out a group meditation! If you’re in our area and would like to come to one of our group meditations, you can find all our upcoming classes here.