Highest Self Podcast 312: Don’t Hate, Meditate with Meg Monahan

We all know we *should* be meditating– but why is it so difficult? In this episode, I sit down with meditation teacher Meg to discuss the common obstacles people have preventing them from having a solid meditation practice and how to overcome them. We discuss the benefits of meditation, the mind-body connection and how it brings clarity into other areas of our lives. We also dive into the topic of friendship and navigating shifts, which many of us are experiencing at this time. Sit back and relax — I’m sure this episode will inspire you to meditate after!

Tap into your heart, your joy and your dharma this month with the frequency of Lemuria in Rose Gold Goddesses. Available on its own at rosegoldgoddesses.com/lemuria or as part of your membership at www.RoseGoldGoddesses.com

Participate in my Healing + Embodiment Through Dance Online Course: www.rosegoldgoddesses.com/dance Track your menstrual cycle and begin each day with peace, clarity + joy with my new A Yogic Path Reflective Journal, available here: amzn.to/2W8ZQu3

Get Your Magnesium Breakthrough for 10% off at bioptimizers.com/sahara with code sahara10 Get 20% off your Organifi Green Juice + Adaptogenic Superfood blends at organifi.com with coupon code “sahara”

Receive up to $2250 off tuition off my alma mater Institute for Integrative Nutrition, plus my How To Create a Thriving Business Coach Webinar and other exclusive bonuses by signing up and listing my name as your referral! Launch your new career today: www.iamsahararose.com/become-a-health-coach

The Living Ayurveda Internship is an 10-week intensive program that combines Ayurveda and herbalism. Studies include: basic Ayurveda training, Vedic astrology, plant botany, herbal medicine making, cultivation of Ayurvedic medicinals, plant meditations, nutrition and cooking, pharmacology, panchakarma training, agnihotra, wildcrafting, and much more. Come join a community of interns at the Banyan Botanicals Farm in Williams, Oregon, a 20-acre certified organic farm practicing sustainable and regenerative agriculture. Learn more and apply early at banyanbotanicals.com/internship.

Save 20% everyday on my favorite Ayurvedic formulas at banyanbotanicals.com/sahara

Pre-order my upcoming book Discover Your Dharma and receive your bonuses: bit.ly/30BXuGU

Intro + Outro Music: Silent Ganges by Maneesh de Moor

Discover your Dosha and receive custom results for your mind and body with my free quiz at eatfeelfresh.com/new-quiz

Connect with me for daily Ayurvedic and modern spiritual wisdom at: Instagram.com/iamsahararose Facebook.com/iamsahararose Twitter.com/iamsahararose

Order My Books Eat Feel Fresh + Idiot’s Guide to Ayurveda: www.iamsahararose.com/books

By accessing this Podcast, I acknowledge that the entire contents are the property of Sahara Rose, or used by Sahara Rose with permission, and are protected under U.S. and international copyright and trademark laws. Except as otherwise provided herein, users of this Podcast may save and use information contained in the Podcast only for personal or other non-commercial, educational purposes. No other use, including, without limitation, reproduction, retransmission or editing, of this Podcast may be made without the prior written permission of the Sahara Rose, which may be requested by contacting [email protected]

This podcast is for educational purposes only. The host claims no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the information presented herein.

TRANSCRIPTION

Episode 312: Don’t Hate, Meditate with Meg Monahan

By Sahara Rose

[0:12]

Namaste. It’s Sahara Rose and welcome back to The Highest Self Podcast, a place where we discuss what makes You, Your Soul’s Highest Evolvement.

[0:20]

We have officially made it to September, back to school season.

Energetically, we are feeling these shifts – it is Vata season. Vata is the Air Dosha, the Element in Ayurveda, which is all about creativity, new beginnings, new ideas, new directions – just moving with the direction that the wind is blowing us.

And I think this year we are feeling that to a greater degree than ever before because of Coronavirus; because of the Great Awakening; because of the fact that you cannot plan, that is not possible in the New Paradigm, it truly is taking it day by day. And this moment in time, there is no greater proof than that, I mean, when in our lives have we not known what next month will bring us? We have never truly known that but we have believed to have known that – we have made plans for the holidays or next year or next school system, and now that’s all gone. We’re living day by day, moment by moment and in a way this brings us a great amount of freedom and possibilities because nothing is truly set in stone.

[1:35]

I know so many of us are going through shifts; I, myself am going through shifts (I’m going to do a whole Solocast about that) but I want you to know that it is normal to be questioning everything in your life – from where you want to live to your relationships, friendships, career, Dharma, sense of Purpose, all of it, because we are in this time of a great redefinition, because everything is up in the air, and that means that it’s up to our choosing, and we choose what to ground down into our reality.

I’m kind of thinking of new play popcorn on the trampoline and everyone would go up and it’s like “Okay, what do I want to ground down? What do I want to just flat fly away, and what do I want to ground down?” So, because, everything in a way has been taken from us, now we get to declare “Okay, here’s what I’m going to recall into my life. Maybe more relaxation time, that’s something I’ve experienced this year and I want more of that; or more Community; or more this; or more that.”

So really use this time to get clear about what it is that you want to bring in and take the action.

You know, we are now in for ‘Go’ season so it is a bit more action oriented, and this year had been (I’ve been calling it Ayahuasca Experience. We’ve been confronting our greatest fears; our greatest shadows; our greatest things that have been swept under the rug that we never wanted to look at – fear of death; fear of loss of freedom; loss of purpose; loss of safety – all of that has shown up for every single person on the Planet, no matter where you are right now.

So, from that complete fear-chaotic state, root chakra, we’ve worked our way up and found more grounding; more grounding in the uncertainty. The face that yeah, we still don’t know, but we’ve become okay with the not knowing. So we really have, energetically and spiritually, grown so much this year, whether you’re a “Spiritual” person or not, you’re spiritually growing right now. And the fact that you’re choosing to listen to this Podcast right now, really shows that you are someone who is committed to this path.

[3:36]

So I encourage you to take this time to really solidify practices that resonate with you, take that extra step to ask things, maybe open up, or things pick up again – what aspects of myself have I learned through this quarantine that I want to keep and what are things that I have seen, shadow sides habits etc. that I’m like “No, that’s got to go!” So, notice that in yourself and then take action on it.

[4:06]

So, I’m super excited to bring you today’s guest – Meg Monahan. And she is actually a dear friend of mine in LA who I’ve known for a couple of years, and I was so excited when her book “Don’t Hate, Meditate” came out last year. And I read it and it was super funny and just really relatable, felt like a friend talking to you, so I really wanted to have her on the Podcast to talk about meditation which is a thing that so many of us have really decided that it is a practice that we want to do, but there are still obstacles that are keeping us from getting there. There are things that can feel more important or social media takes you over or so many things like that.

So, we really talk about why meditation is so difficult for people, and then why it’s worth is. What are the actual benefits that you get from it which you don’t notice in meditation but you notice outside of your life; and different forms of meditation that exist; and what to look out for; and all questions that you have – Meditation, Mind-Body Connection – we talk about them in this Episode.

[5:06]

Another great topic that we ended up speaking about are friendships because friendships are a huge part of our life. With Rose Gold Goddesses, my Sacred Sisterhood Collective all about embodying the Goddess within, is all about fostering Community. And so many Sisters coming there are saying “I have no friends; I have no spiritual friends; I feel like I am completely alone; I don’t have anyone to talk to about the kind of things that I’m interested in; and I don’t have anyone to jam out with on Astrology, and Past Lives, and Ayurveda, and Shamanism, and crystals, and all these things that now I’m interested in; and I feel ostracized and weird.” And a lot of people, especially during Covid, friendships are breaking apart and sometimes it needs a solid friendship break-up, and other times it’s more of a natural ebb and flow, or a natural flow away.

So we talk about that – Friendships, and navigating it because it is a topic that I feel like we discuss so much as a society on relationships, and break-ups and dating, but we never really get the guide to friendships. And in a way it could be so much trickier; because at least with a break-up, it’s sort of like, you know what a break-up is, you’re not really going to talk more. With friendships, you don’t really have that clarity, and because there’s no romantic element involved, it’s just not as clear cut, so it can get really, really confusing, but the thing is a toxic friendship, or even a friendship that’s not in alignment with your truth can really take away from your life, so it is something worth noticing and stepping away from if it is not serving you.

So we talk all about that and really jamming out about friendships in the 21st century and how to navigate them, especially as you’re spiritually evolving.

[6:44]

So, without further ado, let’s welcome Meg Monahan to The Highest Self Podcast.

______________________________________________________

[6:50] Advertisement

And before we get started, check out these brands that make The Highest Self Podcast possible.

1.

Are you that person that all your friends and family members come to when they need Wellness advice? Are you constantly looking up new ways to heal and balance your Mind, Body and Spirit (and including listening to this podcast)? Well, have you ever considered having a career becoming a holistic health coach where you get to decide your own hours, work with people, tackling the subjects that you are most passionate about and having financial freedom along the way? Well, I’m so excited to be teaming up with my very own Alma Mater Institute For Integrative Nutrition to offer their biggest discount yet. You’ll receive $2,250 off tuition, an extra bonus that they’re offering just with my Highest Self Podcast listeners, on how to launch your dream book. This course is going to get you super-clear on what your book is about and how to bring it out to the world. I’ve created a webinar for you on how to have a thriving business as a health coach, so using social media, creating passive income, how to have a waiting list of clients and become the best known coach in your niche with raving testimonials; tickets to a live, upcoming IIN conference where I will be meeting you over there – super excited to connect – and a bundle of all digital wellness guides like – Ayurveda, Self-Love, Whole-Food Eating, etc. So, all you have to do is head over to my show notes, you’ll see the link there, it’s the little ‘bit.ly’ link, it’ll take you right there, you’ll be able to receive a sample class, check out the curriculum, get all your questions answered. And, I’m soul excited to have you on this mission, raising the vibration of the planet together as a health coach. Again, head over to my show notes, you’ll see the link right there and I’ll see you inside.

2.

A lot of us don’t feel comfortable going to supermarkets right now. And cafés are closed, which means we aren’t picking up green juices or even buying fresh produce as often. But right now, it is more important than ever before, to keep our immune systems high, especially with greens and super-foods.

I’ve been drinking “Organifi Green” every single day, and it’s been a Goddess send. It contains immune-boosting ingredients like Moringa, Chorella, Spirulina, Wheat Grass, Ashwagandha, Turmeric, Lemon, Mint and so much more.

It takes only one minute to add into my water and I feel so good knowing that at least I got my greens in for that day, which frankly I may not have had otherwise.

I’ve also sent it to my family members to keep them healthy at this time too.

You can receive 20% off your Organifi at organifi.com using coupon code ‘Sahara’. Again, that’s organifi.com using coupon code Sahara, and that link is in the show notes.

[9:40] End of Advertisement

______________________________________________________

[9:40] Interview

[9:41] Sahara:

Welcome Meg to The Highest Self Podcast, it’s so great to have you here.

[9:44] Meg:

I’m so excited about this conversation.

[9:47] Sahara:

The first question I would love to ask you is what makes you Your Highest Self?

[9:52] Meg:

Oh God! Meditation (not to be too cliché), without regularly being reminded of who I really am, which happens every time I meditate, I am a lesser version of myself. I forget that I can be trusting; I forget that I don’t have to worry about everything; I forget that I have the ability to choose how I see things, I forget that it’s not my job to figure everything out.

So without that daily dip into reminderland, I’m not my Highest Self.

[10:25] Sahara:

I love that!

So, a lot of people, and I can actually relate to this because we’ll talk about my journey with meditation, but when you say “I go back into who I am when I meditate” a lot of people’s experiences when they meditate is they’re just annoyed, they just want to stop, they’re like “I don’t want to experience the truth of who I am.”

So, what shift happens when you get that kind of experience that feels like the most important, profound thing of your life versus this thing that you have to overcome?

[10:55] Meg:

In the beginning of your meditation, in a sit, and in the beginning of your relationship with meditation there’s this little hurdle that you have to get over where your mind has to stop being the thing that directs your attention. And that’s really excruciating in the beginning because your mind isn’t used to having all your attention; your is used to you saying “You know what, I’m just going to take a few minutes and observe you, or just notice what is without getting involved, without replying” and that’s trivalent. There’s that great line, I don’t know who said it, but, if you can’t sit with yourself for 20 minutes silently, what makes you think anyone else wants to?

But if you can’t handle what’s happening in your mind, you’ve no business speaking what’s happening in your mind or acting from what’s happening in your mind.

So, I would say be okay with the fact that that’s going to be a little bit of inexperiential learning curve that might be uncomfortable in the beginning, number one.

Number two, there’s a difference between change and transformation. And transformation takes longer because you have to actually embody the things, and not just to intellectually understand them. As you start to meditate longer, you start to embody all of the qualities that reflect your highest self, and every time you go back into meditation, that’s what you are then plugging into. But all of that takes a minute, or 20 twice a day. It’s not the instant “I’m inspired and now I’m changed” because that’s not lasting. So be okay with it not feeling magical, and also be okay with all the meditations. My teacher David G. always says there’s no good or bad meditations, the only bad meditation is the one you don’t do. And the magic of your practice reveals itself more often outside than not, outside of your practice.

Yes you have; I’ve had some epic meditations, I had a really epic one in Rome, at the Vatican (no big deal) and that one was dope. That was a dope meditation that I remember; but that meditation is just as good as the one that I had yesterday where all I heard was leaf blowers and I was thinking about how unnecessary they are and how annoying it is, and feeling really irritated most of the time – both of those are equally good; one just felt better; one was a little more magical. But the muscle that I’m building to be able to notice my mind, to be able to control where my intention is, to be able to expand my aortas, that muscle is being worked equally, and will be fluxed equally outside of that meditation.

[13:28] Sahara:

So beautifully said, and I think when you put it that was we’re like “Okay, I get that, I want that.” Anyone listening to this Podcast wants more spirituality in their lives and I think it’s hard because we live in this mind-based society so the way that we even get to spirituality is by reading a book about spirituality, or pulling cards, or even doing something creative.

So what would you distinguish, what is meditation and what are meditative activities? Because I think, like we were talking about before, these days we say “Me cooking is my meditation;” for me, I often say “Me dancing is my meditation.” But now I’ve realized that it’s not necessarily meditation, it’s something else. So what would you say are the distinguishing factors?

[14:18] Meg:

Yeah, and you can do all those things mindfully; and you can use rituals and dance to evoke an energy; to all of these things, but when you meditate, at least when you meditate the way that I talk about in the book, with a mantra, you’re building this muscle of awareness to just be able to notice your mind. You are innately, whether you realize it or not, creating a space between you and your thoughts, where you innately have the ability to notice the thought, to say to yourself “Wow, look at that thought, it’s not interesting” and then you get to decide from there “Do I want to believe that thought? Do I want to invite that thought to become the word that I’m speaking; to become an action that I’m taking?” Every time you drift from that point of focus, which again, for me is a mantra, silent repetition of a mantra; every time you drift from that point of focus and come back, it’s like doing a mental rep and building that muscle of awareness that you are then using in every moment after that when you leave your meditation.

You know, we’re really bad at noticing our mind; we immediately get involved; we immediately believe the thought that we’re having, and then we lose all power, and we’re a victim of our mind. And most of our minds are super-fucking conditioned, and not in the best ways. Most of us were not raised with the daily conditioning of “The world is here for you. There’s an opportunity at every moment. There’s abundance around you everywhere, always” – most of us aren’t raised with that, because we were raised by parents that were raised by parents that were raised by parents that were kids. And so, in order to change how you’re seeing the world, you have to first notice how you’re seeing the world (which is why I put a quiz in that book too; not just because I love quizzes, but I love a good Cosmo quiz circa 1999).

[16:06] Sahara:

So, would you say that there is a difference between – meditation is sitting, having your thought, focusing on a mantra; and everything else is mindfulness. Is that how you would kind of….

[16:20] Meg:

I would say yeah, being mindful, being present, being in your body and feeling your body while you’re dancing, when you’re cooking; looking at the colors that you’re using; noticing the texture of cutting a vegetable; the smell; and experiencing those things with complete presence and mindfulness – that’s incredible! And will enrich your life, and will absolutely make you feel something that’s beneficial. But that’s different than being a witness, learning how to be the observer of your mind.

[16:52] Sahara:

It is, it is a different scale.

[16:54] Meg:

It’s just a different workout.

[16:55] Sahara:

It is a different workout. What I’ve experienced is, when I dance the same thing happens when my mind can be very involved at the beginning. Let’s say I’m in ecstatic dancer, maybe the first 30 minutes I’m like “Aggh, I have other things to do, I don’t want to be here” and then sometimes I’ll get into that moment where I’m fully in the dance and I’m immersed into it, and then I’ll come back to my mind. And it’s like that same type of thing is happening but it’s not necessarily my goal, I’m not really going there, I am going there for that but it’s not the same as the meditation, the soul focus. I’m trying to get into my body which the side effect is losing the mind. Where the meditation..

[17:35] Meg:

And you do get into that flow state, there’s for sure magic in that.

[17:40] Sahara:

Yes, and I think that different people – some people are more somatic, some people are more emotional etc. and I feel like I’m a pretty somatic person and that’s why it works well for me, but what I’ve noticed is, then when it’s like “Okay, it’s 4pm, I should meditate now” that is when I’m like “No, no, no” because I’m so immersed in my day and what I’m doing and all of those things, to be dragged out of it for a meditation, that feels like the last thing that I want to do.

So what do you recommend? Because I know a lot of people, I don’t know for yourself, in the TM training they say “Meditate in the afternoon, not before you sleep” – how does one make that happen?

[18:22] Meg:

It’s really important to know why you’re meditating. I’m the first to admit that meditation feels a lot like sitting and doing nothing. And when you have all of these ‘somethings’ to do that are either more important or more fun than sitting by yourself, or going to a studio and sitting with a bunch of strangers and doing “nothing” – that feels unappealing and unattractive. So it’s really important to know, first and foremost, why you’re meditating.

So, I started meditating purely for stress, I had no spiritual intention behind it, it was purely because my body was freaking out from the stress in my life, and that’s what made me sit down, because I learned all of these ways in which meditation was going to physiologically balance me and be restorative and regenerative, and help me not have chronic hives, and help me not have all these things I was dealing with. And at a certain point that reason changed and now it’s this deeply spiritual thing in my life.

But connect with ‘why’, in this moment, with ‘why’ you have at least a little bit of the desire to meditate, and that is the thing that will get you to sit down. Because everything might be more fun than sitting down and doing nothing, but everything isn’t more fun than balancing your stress that’s causing you severe physical imbalances. Not everything is going to be more important than you sleeping better; than you having less reactive relationships; than you feeling fearful about money and not as trusting. And when you can connect with that deepest root, like that song ‘Culpa’ that deepest intention, it’ll be easier to prioritize it.

I would also say also, if you are a very ‘Type A’ kind of person, put it in your schedule, just put it in your schedule the days, the times that you’re going to meditate each day.

In the training that I did with Deepak Chopra, we do say kind of the first thing in the morning and then after the most productive part of your day. So for you, that might be 7pm, 8pm – the reason they tell people not to meditate right before bed, it’s just because you’ll then associate meditation with sleeping. And whatever technique you’re using will start to put you to sleep, you’ll have that Pavlovian response, where it’s like “Oh, it’s time to fall asleep.”

[20:25] Sahara:

That already happens to me whenever I meditate, I’m either thinking or this; or I’m on that brink of falling asleep or not. So now I associate a good meditation with one that I’m kind of asleep, a dream-like state.

[20:38] Meg:

Well that in-between place is great. And if you do fall asleep, you’ll fall asleep all the time – it means that either you need more sleep (very deep insights here) or that you’re sitting too comfortably. I am very Kapha in my nature and I can fall asleep anywhere. So when I meditate, I generally don’t have my head supported, because that’s not a recipe for me staying awake, so check out how you’re sitting.

[21:02] Sahara:

So, what if you sitting up it kind of hurts your back, can you lie down and meditate? If you don’t have to have your chakras in balance.

[21:13] Meg:

There’s definitely a reason why people say “Well, sit, there’s usually cord coming from your head, elongating your spine” – there’s a reason why we hear that. If that’s not comfortable, then the benefit of doing that is being outweighed by the discomfort because you won’t do it. We don’t do things that are uncomfortable.

[21:30] Sahara:

That’s all I think about, my back hurting.

[21:31] Meg:

Yeah. In the beginning, if your back hurts when you’re sitting up, then lie down. The first time I ever meditated, I had my legs crossed (I was with Deepak Chopra at the Chopra Center) and I got my mantra, and then we went into the room to meditate for the first time with our mantra. And there was an altar in the middle with rose petals and all these little blocks around it, and then a bunch of just chairs, and my 23-year old self walked in and was like “Oh, I obviously need to sit in front of the altar.” And so I propped myself on one of these, very conservatively cloth-covered blocks, and I sat down and I crossed my legs, and I put my hands in a Mudra (not that I knew what that meant) and I elongated my spine and I closed my eyes and I started meditating. And within 12 seconds, my legs were numb and I was miserable, and I sat like that for the whole 30 minutes. And then the teacher comes in and says “How was that?” and I said “That was awful, my legs are numb, I can’t feel my legs, I’m never doing this again” and he goes “Well, why didn’t you just move?” and I said “Well, I didn’t want to ruin everyone’s meditation.” And that was my first moment of being humbled by meditation. So sit comfortably.

[22:48] Sahara:

So now how do you sit?

[22:49] Meg:

I usually sit, part of my couch has a chaise (like an attached chaise lounge), my legs are usually out, my back is supported, usually my neck isn’t super-supported, but I sit on my couch really comfortably.

[23:02] Sahara:

It’s so funny you share that because I was also at this conference where Deepak and this Buddhist monk were facilitating a meditation; it was like the first ever Rinpoche and Deepak coming together for this meditation, I remember I was so excited about it, and I was like (this was like a couple of years ago) and I was like “I’m just going to do this whole” and it was like a 2-3 hour long meditation. I was going in, I went right in front, there was no space to even lie down, I was the person in front, back up, I’m here for my spiritual, most profound experience – my back hurt so much, and there were like 200 people in that room and I was like “I don’t know what to do” so then I’m kind of leaning on my hands, and my hands are going numb. It’s so funny because we all have this image of meditation where we’re like “Lord Shiva in the Himalayas” and when we’re in it, it doesn’t feel that way and we tell ourselves we’re bad meditators.

[23:51] Meg:

Yeah, my ego is what picked that block in front of the altar. And I sat down and I said my mantra maybe twice, and thought to myself “You look so fucking good! You’re going to be such a good meditator, I hope someone takes a picture of this.” So, sit comfortably. It’s not that serious.

[24:11] Sahara:

Well that’s what I think. There are so many different schools of meditation, and I’ve tried – I did the TM training (transcendental meditation, for those of you who haven’t heard of it) and that was a more serious approach. Definitely the training was like – you really had to be committed to it and I was like “You know what, this is it.” Because I heard so much, Oprah does it, Deepak does it, Tony Robbins, all these folks – “Wow, if they’re doing something, I feel like I should be doing that thing too” and it was in Bali (a recipe for spiritual enlightenment). And right before, it was my session to that we do the Puja and give the offering – I was sitting on the grass, grounding myself, and all these red ants, which I didn’t realize were in the grass were all over my body and I was bit hundreds of times with these red ants, and I was hurting and itching, and it was time for me to go in for the Puja – this actually happens to me all the time but I was feeling very itchy during the meditation, which happens to me often, of an unrelated itch, and I want to actually speak to that, but this was like a real deal, actual red, fire itching. So the whole time I’m trying to look into the candle flame and he’s giving me the mantra, and I’m trying to make this, and all I can think about is how badly my body hurts but I was like “This is the Universe testing me. It’s trying to make me overcome my body and if I’m able to overcome this, I can overcome anything.” Perhaps that was the path but honestly it may have just been the ants because I never really stuck with the practice; I also didn’t like the mantra he gave me. I didn’t like the name, the word, didn’t want to repeat it, I was like “It’ll just remind me of my ex, ugh, I don’t want to keep saying this forever.” And it just felt like “Where did this come from? It doesn’t mean anything? How come it doesn’t mean anything? What Goddess is it?” So, it just wasn’t my path but I think a lot of us, we try one path and then we realize it’s not for us.

So, first I want to talk about why a lot of us feel itchy when we’re meditating.

[26:13] Meg:

Fire ants! I don’t think I’ve heard the itchy thing before.

[26:15] Sahara:

When you’re meditating, you don’t suddenly feel like you need to itch something?

[26:18] Meg:

No. Sometimes my hands will get tingly but I feel like that’s a good thing; that feels nice.

[26:25] Sahara:

No, mine is always like “Your foot itches; your foot itches.”

[26:29] Meg:

Well just itch your foot.

[26:30] Sahara:

But then something else will – it’s in my mind, trying to take me away from the experience.

[26:35] Meg:

Yeah, I don’t get a lot of that.

[26:36] Sahara:

What are your resistances? What are common resistances that come up?

[26:40] Meg:

In meditation? For me it’s more judgment – the New Yorker in me can turn on Larry Davis instantly, internally. So for me, when I’m feeling restless in meditation, it’s less physical and it’s more, again, why is that leaf blower so annoying; why do they do that every day; what are they even doing; where are they even blowing? It goes into that and in a negative way, not just “What should I do later?”

[27:05] Sahara:

I think we’ve all been in that yoga, meditation class and someone sneezes and you’re like “You ruined everything!”

[27:12] Meg:

Why are you here, you’re sick?! I can easily become Larry Davis!

So, my resistance comes in the form of judgment.

[27:22] Sahara:

It’s so funny because it actually gives us an opportunity to realize what our unique blocks are.

[27:28] Meg:

Yeah! Because that’s where I go when I’m my lesser self in the world – it’s interesting.

[27:35] Sahara:

So, talk to me, how do we find the right type of meditation for us?

[27:39] Meg:

I think there’s so many. I would say notice…

[27:43] Sahara:

What are the common ones, for people who might not even know?

[27:46] Meg:

So, there’s Mantra Meditation, I teach what Deepak – primordial sound meditation which is similar to TM, slightly different mantras, which you might like better. There are three words, we call them ‘The Circular Mantra’ it’s not so hard, it’s still based on your birth information (represents the sound the Earth was vibrating at when you were born, no big deal). But there are a lot of universal mantras in the book I use (so ‘Hum’ as one). I like mantras, and I think especially if you have a very active mind, mantras are so helpful because they act as a thought. So you’re repeating silently this one thought, and the practice is to notice when you drift away to the other thoughts in your mind, to a sound, to the itching. And then you come back to that mantra.

[28:30] Sahara:

So how do we repeat the mantra? Because I end up singing it and I end up making songs with it and I’m like “Is this it?” I’m just singing a song of the mantra the whole time.

[28:40] Meg:

Yeah, it’s kind of different for everybody. Some people that are more visual.

[28:44] Sahara:

You’re like ‘Hummm’ this is a hit, where’s my record deal?

[28:50] Meg:

I’m a more audible person; I’m a singer, so sometimes, I’m not quite crafting masterpieces as you are, but I definitely hear it, almost as if it’s being whispered. Some people are more visual and they’ll see it. And some people, especially ‘So hum’ you can link with the rats, so some people find that to be really helpful, where you inhale ‘So’ and you exhale ‘Hum.’

[29:09] Sahara:

I imagine myself dancing to it, and I imagine dancers. Would that still be meditating?

[29:15] Meg:

The whole Broadway show!

[29:18] Sahara:

Yeah, I’m doing a choreography; there’s an overturn and then the number starts. But I’m just repeating right now from just thinking about dancing my mantra.

[29:26] Meg:

I mean yeah, your point of focus, I would say, that counts. I mean, if you’re back stage, getting people to costumes, thinking that we’ve drifted away a bit.

[29:36] Sahara:

No, it’s like a very Odyssey classical type dance comes through.

[29:40] Meg:

Yeah

[29:41] Sahara:

It’s so interesting, our own guides and our own interpretations. But then I’m like “Wouldn’t true meditation be like absolutely nothing?”

[29:50] Meg:

So, as long as you’re alive, you’re going to have thoughts; as long as you have a pulse, you’re going to have thoughts.

Again, with mantra, we’re giving you this one thought to keep coming back to, and that’s always going to be there. There’s mindfulness, there’s more of a breath point of focus where you’re focusing on the physical sensation of inhaling and exhaling, or just acknowledging “I’m breathing in, I’m breathing out”, I can do those now. When I first started meditating, again, my New Yorker mind had a very hard time just resting on the physical sensation of my breath because we don’t pay attention to the fact that we’re breathing (most of the time) so all of a sudden to just notice that – that wasn’t enough of an anchor for me, but there’s that.

Then you have Mindful Walking, you have some of these mindfulness-based things. But if the idea of sitting silently with yourself is excruciating, then you should probably sit silently with yourself.

[30:46] Sahara:

Love that! And there are so many great Apps now that have so many different types of meditations, but some of the meditation teachers that I’ve spoken to said that meditation Apps are not helpful because you’re not cultivating the awareness within yourself. What is your perspective?

[31:00] Meg:

Yeah, I think as an entry way, they’re so helpful. I think they count as meditation; I think they’re useful, because holding space for yourself, it can be really difficult. It’s hard enough to sit silently..

[31:18] Sahara:

It’s like working out with a video on vs. doing it yourself.

[31:18] Meg:

Exactly! If you’re in a studio right; when someone else is holding that energy for you and all you have to do is show up and stay in the room, and do what you’re told – I don’t do burpees on my own, but when I’m with my trainer and he says “Do 20 burpees” I will fight a little bit and then I’ll do 20 burpees – it’s not that dissimilar with meditation.

So again, in the beginning, if that’s what gets you meditating, then use an App. If at some point you realize that you are absolutely dependent on that App to sit and meditate, then it might be time to go a little bit deeper, and it might be time to connect with the teacher, it might be time to take a course, to go on a retreat, to just get some more tools to be able to hold that space for yourself.

[32:00] Sahara:

Yeah, I mean if you think about it, doing a workout while a YouTube video is on doesn’t make it less of a workout, you’re still doing it. So that’s why for me, I feel like meditation Apps are still helpful because, otherwise, I’ll just go into other thoughts, but some of my most spiritual experiences (I would say all of my spiritual experiences) have not been through an App. They have been natural and organic on their own, of just walking in Nature, and deciding to sit down and just having that beautiful spontaneous experience. But most of us don’t allow that in our day to day lives so we have to just put it in our schedule.

[32:41] Meg:

And I think it takes you getting comfortable in that space within yourself to be able to have those kinds of magical experiences that you just explained. It takes you being mindful; it takes you being comfortable being silent and noticing what’s around you; it takes you being present, because otherwise you miss those things.

[33:00] Sahara:

Yep, it’s so true.

So, I want to talk about how meditation changes our personality. Because you mentioned how you used to be a cynical New Yorker, you were in a victim mentality, and now it’s the complete opposite of who you are. So, how did meditation change you?

[33:19] Meg:

So, I like to think about around 7 or 8 years old (I’ll never forget when Deepak Chopra said those to me, 11 or 12 years ago – blew my mind). Around 7 or 8 years old is when you have that initial imprint of conditioning. So, I like to imagine that it’s when you’re given a set of prescription lenses for how you see the world, and it’s made up of everything that you’ve seen and heard and been told to see and hear, from when you’re born until that point. And then after that point most of us see the world through that very specific prescription lens, and over time that lens gets thicker, and thicker, and thicker and thicker, because we keep reinforcing the same way of seeing and the same way of being – which is unhelpful; wildly unhelpful.

[34:00] Sahara:

Why?

[34:02] Meg:

Because again, unless you’re raised with this expanded awareness; this pure lens; most of us get really far from who we were when we arrived here. Two year old Megan was not running around being like “Of course this is happening to me, why wouldn’t it happen to me?” I was a little bit sarcastic, 4-5 years old, but 2 – I was still just unapologetically looking for joy and bliss and being present, so that’s why kids are so powerful to be around, because they’re not as conditioned, they haven’t been told who to be. After that point that lens gets thicker and thicker. So every time you meditate, I like to imagine that it’s like shaving away a layer of that lens. And you get closer and closer to who you are when you came.

So, I still have my New York wit and a little bit of sarcasm, but not in that dell stuck deprecating way; not in that victimy way; certainly not in that negative way. And when I’m tempted to go back into that, I notice it. If something happens and I go into judgment mode – I notice it and I can say “Wow, do I really want to show up like that right now or do I want to be the better version of me?”

___________________________________________________

[35:10] Advertisement:

We’ll take a quick break so I can give a shout-out to our sponsors.

1.

Calling all budding herbalists; aspiring yogis; wild crafting enthusiasts; and especially those with interest of learning Ayurveda. Banyon Botanicals has a great opportunity for you.

The living Ayurveda internship is intensive program that blends together Ayurveda and Herbalism. Learn basic Ayurvedic training, Vedic Astrology, Plant Botany, and other valuable teachings with respected Ayurvedic experts in various fields. And speaking of fields, all of this is happening at the beautiful Banyon Botanicals’ farm in Williams, Oregon, where interns will spend 11 weeks learning and growing.

There are two sessions coming up in 2021 and enrollment starts on August 1st. If this is striking a cord with you and you feel inspired to apply, I highly recommend sending them the application early.

Learn more about this one of a kind learning opportunity at banyonbotanicals.com/internship.

And remember, you save 20% off on any Banyon Botanicals product every day at banyonbotanicals.com/sahara. Both links are in the show notes.

2.

So, a couple years ago I had the worst digestive issues, adrenal fatigue. I felt so tired during the day and then wired at night, and it wasn’t until someone recommended me to take magnesium that my entire life shifted, I could sleep better, I felt better and I was able to actually digest food.

So, since then I’ve gone totally geeked-out on understanding the best types of magnesium and I actually found out that it’s important to get all seven forms of magnesium for your body to truly function. And most of us, just from getting it from our diet, are getting one to max two forms and that’s how I came across Bio-Optimizer. They’re endorsed by Dave Aspery, many health professionals, they have over ten years of research that they’ve been doing since they’ve been in business and really have found the formula of optimal magnesium. And I’m super-excited to be sharing them with my Highest Self Podcast community for 10% off.

You can head over to biooptimizers.com/sahara that link is in the show notes, and use code ‘Sahara10’ for 10% off. I’m super-excited for magnesium to change your life the way it has mine

[37:24] End of Advertisement

___________________________________________________

[37:25] Interview

[37:26] Sahara:

So, when you were meditating, were those thoughts coming up and you were allowing yourself to think about it and think about why, and doing that unraveling work in yourself; or did it actually come from you without you not even thinking about it and it just naturally dissolved?

[37:40] Meg:

It naturally happened.

[37:42] Sahara:

Because I feel like sometimes when I meditate, I come up with this earth-shattering thought of “Maybe the reason why I’ve always been like this is that.” and then I start psychoanalyzing myself.

[37:51] Meg:

Yeah, I usually do my reflecting; my “meditating” on things at the end of my meditation; and I will ask the question, ask for clarity, ask for whatever it is that I’m looking for, and then let it go. And I’ll sit for a few minutes in silence and just notice if in that moment any of the subtle answers are kind of bubbling up to the surface of my mind. Usually they don’t; usually they come when I’m driving; they come when I’m working out, they come very much outside of my meditation. So I don’t do a ton of, that’s just thinking, it’s more productive thinking, but that’s really just you sitting there thinking. So I tend to not go into that too much, and anything I needed to remember, I remember, post meditation.

[38:36] Sahara:

What if you’re afraid you’ll forget?

[38:39] Meg:

I mean, if you’re really afraid you’ll forget, put a notebook near you, but don’t get addicted to every time you have a new thought, being “Oh, let me record that.”

[38:48] Sahara:

Right! Because I feel like, often what happens is when I start to meditate, within five minutes I’m like “I forgot to send that email or this” and I’m like “This is really important for me to remember” and I’m like “When I look at my thumb, I’m going to remember” and then I’m like “Should I get out of it” and then it turns into this conversation of what I should do about this thought.

[39:05] Meg:

If you’re really worried, put a notebook near you, and if you absolutely need to, write it down and then just go back into your meditation. But generally you’ll remember.

[39:15] Sahara:

Yeah. It’s like once you get still, all of these things that you remember like “I didn’t fix that person’s back” appears.

[39:24] Meg:

That’s clarity you know. Because when you’re meditating you don’t stop your thoughts but you slow them down. And all of a sudden there’s this space that’s revealed in between your thoughts and you go from just the same thoughts you’ve had over and over and over, because most of us have I think estimated around 70% of the same thoughts every single day, it’s our conditioning.

[39:44] Sahara:

I don’t feel like I do, do you?

[39:45] Meg:

Well not anymore, because I’m meditating. But prior to that, absolutely, absolutely.

So when you create room, there’s new thoughts that have all of a sudden this real estate to reveal themselves to you. So, it’s an incredible thing, and a really cool thing when you notice when that starts to happen; and it might happen in meditation; it might happen outside of meditation. I have a whole note on my phone that just says ‘New Thoughts’ because I have new thoughts all the time. I’ll be having a conversation with someone and I’ll just stop and say “I’m so sorry, I need to take a minute and write that down because I’ve never said that before and I really like that; and I think I need to get into it a little bit” (I’m annoying to have lunch with) but yeah, you’ll have new thoughts.

[40:30] Sahara:

Yeah. That’s a great idea because I do think often times when we’re in conversation with someone we’re like “Oh, wow, I haven’t thought of that rabbit hole before, I want to get back to that.”

[40:40] Meg:

Right, so start writing those things down.

[40:41] Sahara:

Less in meditation, more in conversation.

[40:45] Meg:

Notice your new thoughts.

[40:47] Sahara:

So, for someone who’s out there like “Well, I feel like I have spiritual practices that work for me; I feel like I don’t really need to meditate” what would you say?

[40:56] Meg:

I would say that’s great and I hope that that works out. Meditation is the greatest tool in my life, and it’s kind of like the adapter generator that continues to shift and show up in different ways, whether it’s physically balancing me or emotionally, or mentally; or spiritually; it’s the thing that has allowed me to, when there is a low – not be so low; and when there is a high – not be so dependent on the high to keep me happy. It’s the thing that has connected me with who I am; the thing that has shifted my relationship with my money into one from scarcity, to one of trust and abundant. I mean, it’s the thing that changed my life.

[41:41] Sahara:

It’s actually everyone, I think, can benefit from it.

[41:44] Meg:

I think everyone can benefit and I think there’s always room to go deeper within yourself. So if you are already doing incredible things and you have rituals and you have a connection, and you feel great, imagine what might be beneath the surface of that greatness. Imagine what you could unlock and awaken. I’m obviously wildly biased, for the record.

[42:12] Sahara:

It’s so true, and I think that, and I’ve seen in myself that the more resistance you have, the more you need it, and look into why you’re being resistant to it. For me, my resistance really came from being so active and being so, just like Pitta in my life, and that I didn’t want to stop because I was like “I want to keep going” and “Productivity is my meditation.” And I do think I still love being productive, and I love doing all of the things. And I was afraid of the pause; I was afraid of “Oh, well, if I slow down what’s going to happen to my whole life? I’m going to lose my accomplishments; I’m going to lose my achievements” and all of that is conditioning from a child of being told “Work hard otherwise you’re not good enough.” And a lot of us are so afraid of slowing down, even for 20 minutes, because we’re like “It’s 20 minutes taking me away from my work time” whereas like, put a time limit on your Instagram and see how quick 20 minutes goes by.

[43:08] Meg:

Right, I was going to say. Go do a plank for 2 minutes; you’ll notice how long a minute is. And it really is very counter intuitive, but when you can step away, what you become unsaturated with and what you bring into, the rest of your time is so much more potent than the version of you that existed before that stuff away.

[43:27] Sahara:

So good! And you write a lot about how meditation helped you see patterns in your relationships, and a lot of people listening, and I know you’re writing a book about that in the future.

So, how can, a lot of people right now dealing with break-ups; a lot of people – relationships with narcissists; and that type of break-up patterns; falling in love with an addict, this, that. How can we use meditation to help?

[43:55] Meg:

It’s so important to notice what you’re attracted to. One of the biggest things in my personal work was realizing that for so much of my life I was mistaking dysfunction for passion. And I’m like “No, it’s not passion, it’s just really fucking dysfunctional” and those are not the same thing. And it’s okay to have a relationship that’s stable and grounded and isn’t filled with uncertainty and unsafe feelings. Meditation gives you this ability to notice what lessons and what stories you’re playing at over and over; it gives you the ability to say “Why am I attracted to this?” And I think we all, with romantic relationships especially, we all have the thing that we are trying to prove from our conditioning. So my conditioning, I was raised by an alcoholic parent (my dad was an alcoholic) and so much of my life I heard (I was so close to him and he’s the reason why I started meditating, we had a lot of karmic things wrapped up in our love for one another but there was also this element of dysfunction) and so I heard a lot “You’re the most important thing to me. I would do anything for you. But I just won’t stop drinking” that was the action that I then saw. There was this discrepancy of what’s being said and what’s being done. And so, I constantly, for years, was looking for men to choose me, and of course I would find the unavailable man that wasn’t available to choose me, which is like the most unhealthy thing, because we get to choose for ourselves, but I was looking for that to be fulfilled. I would find the one that was unavailable in some way, shape or form (geographically I really covered all the basis, and a lot of time they were alcoholics which just made it extra fun).

[45:34] Sahara:

Attracting long distance relationships is one that I’ve seen a lot of people as a pattern.

[45:39] Meg:

Yeah. And I would say “Okay, great, now I’m this position of this guy, that isn’t available for me in some way, and if I’m good enough; if I’m thin enough; if I’m successful enough; if I’m funny enough; if I’m whatever enough; then he will choose me and that will be validated (looking back I can now see that). And I had to live that lesson, probably 4 times, 4 solid times, the last one was the real doozy. And then I started to change that conditioning through meditation; I started to be able to more easily notice where I was being attracted, and then at a certain point I just stopped being attracted to those people, and I stopped being attractive to those people. Because a big part of my conditioning was being co-dependent; was managing other people’s feelings; was being the perfect partner to an alcoholic (I was bred for that) and so those people were also very much attracted to me, and that just started to stop happening. So there was definitely some therapy and some understanding around why that was, but a lot of it was just a really organic shift because I started to un-condition myself in that way.

[46:53] Sahara:

So true and I think as we shift, the people we are attracted to and attractive to, elevate with that as well. Maybe before, a lot of women are attracted to the emotionally unavailable bad boy – I think all of us women, at some level, because of our conditioning, want to be chosen (I can definitely relate to that) and then as we choose ourselves and our self-worth goes up, then suddenly we realize “That’s not sexy that you’re sometimes ignoring me.” But it’s interesting because a lot of this stuff is biological too, and we can go back to men were hunters and we were waiting in the caves “Is he going to come back; is he not?” which is the equivalent to “Is he going to text me back or not?” And then the conditioning that has come from millennia of doing this in this lifetime is a lot of big work, but we’re doing it and it just shows how capable we are of changing and transforming as you say.

[47:58] Meg:

And when you have just another muscle to be able to flex in that journey, which is being able to notice your thoughts, it’s just a game changer.

[48:10] Sahara:

So what would you say, because I’ve experienced this a lot, and people I’ve spoken to, that they are in a relationship with a narcissist and trying to have a break-up. What makes us attract a narcissist?

[48:22] Meg:

You get to look at the reflections, so (I don’t think I’ve ever dated a narcissist, I think I went on two dates with one though, it was terrible) I think you get to look at what it’s reflecting to you that you believe about yourself (which is probably an ugly thought; which is probably an ugly feeling; which is probably an ugly part of your story). My reflection was like “I’m not good enough until my worth is very conditional” and so I attracted men that affirmed that.

So, I would say, first and foremost leave, and start meditating, and get yourself some support around you. But look at what that mirror is showing you – is that mirror showing you that you don’t actually love yourself enough that you don’t have unconditional love for yourself; that you only love yourself when someone else loves you – look at what that reflection of that narcissist is revealing. It’s just a point to lean into.

[49:13] Sahara:

And I think a lot of the times, women who are the most giving attract that because they want to give their all to someone. And often times, people who are narcissists or sociopaths are super-charming and they have that charisma around them that makes you attracted to them but the more they take, take, take, the more you give, give, give and it creates this co-dependency which is a huge [inaudible 49:36]

[49:37] Meg:

So, boundaries. With a narcissist there’s really leaky boundaries. So you can look within yourself – where do I have boundary issues? Where am I not putting up boundaries? Where does it feel uncomfortable to say “That’s not working for me” and it’s okay if you don’t feel okay about that, on the other end of that sentence because co-dependency, and I think it’s such a misconception what co-dependency is. Because a lot of it’s really thinking that you have the ability to control other people’s feelings and manage other people’s feelings. And also, your well-being, being wrapped up in how someone else feels. So for a long time I was so co-dependent with my dad, and when he was good, I was good; and when that relationship didn’t feel okay, I didn’t feel okay.

So with a narcissist it’s really easy to feel like you need to keep shifting and managing how you’re feeling so they feel a certain way; and you don’t feel safe unless they’re feeling good; so there might be some work there.

[50:32] Sahara:

So, what would you say is the difference; because everyone these days “I’m an Empath” – I think we use that label a lot to justify co-dependent behaviors, like “Well, you know, I’m an Empath, so, I feel everything” and we justify why we don’t have boundaries with people.

So, what do you think; where do we draw the line of empathic and taking on everyone’s shit?

[50:58] Meg:

Yeah, there’s a huge line that gets to be drawn there. You can acknowledge that you can feel someone else’s pain and also say that pain isn’t any of my business, and it’s not my job to fix your pain.

[51:14] Sahara:

I think a lot of people – their thoughts; they can’t control their thoughts. You see something sad that happened, like in the news right now, so much sad stuff and you just can’t stop thinking about it, and then I think – again, it comes back to the meditation in the brain.

[51:30] Meg:

That’s why we get to meditate. So you can say “Wow, I’m feeling really sad right now; I’m feeling really upset” and it’s not; it’s a really healthy detachment when you create that space between you as the observer, as the witness and your thought; because again, you are not your thoughts. And it doesn’t mean that you are walking around like a robot, not feeling and experiencing things, but especially when it’s a heavy feeling or a heavy energy that’s coming through, even if it’s just for the length of a breath or connecting with the space between two breaths where you can take a step out of it and just say “Wow, I’m feeling really overwhelmed; I’m feeling really.” Meditation also is the failsafe I think of not creating a story without your permission. It’s so easy to get wrapped up, especially in the juicy seductive nature of (I don’t want to say negative emotions) but of sadness; or anger; or resentment; it’s a grief; it’s so easy to become that and say “Oh, I’m so…” even the whole “I’m an Empath and I feel everything” – that’s a really juicy story, and you can become a victim really fast in that, and it feels believable. So it’s just so important to regulate and to just notice the story that you’re telling yourself; and to make sure it’s one that’s actually supporting how you want to be living. I think it’s Emerson that said “The ancestor to every action that you’ve ever taken is a thought.”

[53:03] Sahara:

So beautiful. And I think a lot of us – it comes down to, I think, the female guilt of like “If I don’t feel really sorry for you and sad about that thing, that I’m a bad person.” And as women, we were tribal, we would take care of the family; we were taking care of the kids, so that’s why when our friend is going through something, we’re like “Sure, vent to me for 2 hours” and we’re thinking about the friend’s issue but we’re also kind of mad and annoyed like “Why did you vent to me so long?” and it’s just like everything is so intertwined, but we feel like we’re a bitch if we get out of it.

[53:40] Meg:

I have these few friendship where I will say to people (the people that I want to vent to), I’ll say “Can I just vent for 20 minutes” and if they’re like “Yes” then I’m like “Great.”

[53:52] Sahara:

So if they say “No” how do you take that?

[53:54] Meg:

Then I’ like “Okay, great.”

[53:57] Sahara:

See, I think a lot of people; if I was like “Can I vent to you?” and I said “No” they’d be “What the fuck?!”

[54:02] Meg:

I think it’s like a mutual respect that you get to have. And especially in our world right now that is filled with so much stimulus, you get to ask if someone is capable of holding space for you.

[54:14] Sahara:

I think that’s really important to ask.

[54:16] Meg:

Somebody, I was telling you about some really difficult conversations this week, and somebody asked me this morning; somebody said “Can you talk today?” Which is like a very vague question, especially for this person, and I said “What kind of conversation is this? Because that’s going to change when I tell you that I’m available.”

[54:38] Sahara:

Right, because if it’s bad news you don’t want to..[inaudible 54:39]

[54:40] Meg:

If it’s going to be a difficult conversation, right. And so because I respected my time and my heart enough, and loved myself, and had enough worth to be able to prioritize my well-being, I was able to have just that little bit of boundary and ask for a little more clarity, and say to them “Yeah, I can actually; I can talk about that at 11, does that work?” And, I had another one today, another said “Can we talk today” (nightmares) – I said “What is this conversation about and how long do you need?” It was a work thing; I was like “I can do 30 minutes at this time; if it’s longer, it needs to be later.”

And the more that you can respect and value yourself enough to say those things, the more you set yourself up to not be resentful. Because the reason you’re resentful isn’t because they’re not respecting your boundaries, it’s because you’re not respecting your boundaries.

[55:31] Sahara:

I think that’s so beautifully said, and when people just go back and rewind and re-listen to that, it would just save so many fights and so many misunderstandings and frustrations. I think, as women, when someone says “Can you talk?” I know, I, often, immediately go into worst-case scenario; they’re mad at me; it’s going to be a fight; what did I do, this; that; and then it takes a lot of boundary setting to be like “Okay, what is it about?” and they say “Oh, it’s.” Do they ever respond “Well I’m mad at you?”

[56:02] Meg:

Well the one today was like “I wanted to have a conversation about our relationship.”

[56:05] Sahara:

So you know there’s some shit going down to be able to like “I’ll be able to put you in my schedule.” I feel like a lot of us would be like “I need to know right now!”

[56:13] Meg:

Well, again, wildly biased – because I meditate, I am equally connected with the part of me that is completely unbothered by the uncertainty. There is a sense of worth and connection to who I am beyond all of this and I realize that me, as Megan, in that role as a friend is just like one of the roles I’m playing – that’s not who I am, and if that relationship is not going well, I’m still okay. Because until you connect with who you are, you are constantly plugging in to all of the external outlets (thirsty for a charge) and when that outlet goes away or when it stops working; when you bought the shitty Apple cord and it stops being compatible and you’re like “It’s not charging” – it’s so hard to be detached and flexible with how those things are going; with how your job is going; with how your romantic status is; with how your friendships are going with your money (whatever it is) – if that’s who you are, then you will always be beholden to those things going well, and that’ out of your control.

[57:18] Sahara:

So well said, and I think that we have a really hard time with someone not being happy with us, and even if it’s someone we don’t even know, we’re like “Why are they not happy with us? What can I do to fix this problem?” and to have that discretion of “I’ll actually be okay if this friendship doesn’t work out.” Maybe it’s for the best, they’re not all meant to last forever. And I think when you have that discretion, you also realize – I had a friend of mine who came over and she was like “Do you have a lot of processing with your friends?” I’m like “Not really” and she’s like “I feel like I’m always processing with my friends. They’re going through something in our relationship, and me” and I’m like “Just for where I’m at in my life, I don’t have time and space for friendships that are like relationships.” And sometimes friendships and some people need friends that are like “Can you talk right now? Or I’m feeling this; or I’m feeling that” and the relationship is this thing that requires maintenance.

For me, because my career is such a huge part of my life, I just don’t have time for that. But I met this girl, briefly, and then she, from seeing her once in a group setting, is texting me and “Can you talk right now?” and I was just like “Oh, wow, she is one of those!” And then a part of me was like “Is she mad at me? even though I just met her for 3 seconds in a group setting. But part of me was like “I need to fix what she’s mad at me about.”

[58:36] Meg:

And you should manage her feelings.

[58:38] Sahara:

Exactly! Then I got out of it and I realized I don’t even want to bark up this tree because I know where it’s going to take me, and immediately she’s asserting her power over me to be like “For some reason I need your attention right now.”

[58:51] Meg:

To be like “Oh, you don’t have boundaries over me, that’s great!” Same thing with dating a narcissist. Like I said, I went on a date with a narcissist, but I went on two dates with him, because very quickly I saw “Oh, you don’t have boundaries; you don’t respect that” and you can see that.

[59:08] Sahara:

And they can feel that! And I don’t think they’re really thinking like “Does this person have boundaries or not?” they’re just thinking about ‘my needs.’ And for them, they’re like “I feel like talking about something, so this person should stop everything they’re doing right now and come back to my feelings. So now, I just have a radar that I could just sense someone like that from one text.” I’ll be like “I’m just not going to reply to this person because I don’t want to continue that conversation.” Or as former me, before meditation and spiritual work, would have been like “Let me see what this person’s mad about” and just get involved in the drama of it all.

[59:40] Meg:

Yeah, there’s so much freedom on the other side of that and of really remembering that what other people think of you is none of your business. Because, even if it does involve you; even if “did” something, it’s still that person’s perception of you, and you can’t control that. You can’t control it.

[1:00:00] Sahara:

And I think that that’s also interesting because I’ve also said you can’t control, that you’re always going to have haters, that means you’re actually on track, especially in your career because it means you’re changing things; you’re trail-blazing etc. and then someone asks “At what point should we be responsible for other people’s emotions?” And I do think that there is a level of responsibility we have around our friends’ emotions – let’s say your friend is going through a really hard time and you’re like “You know what, you’re kind of ruining my vibe and I don’t want to hear about anything you’re going through” and they’ve had a death in the family or something.

So sometimes, based off of that relationship, you do have to, maybe, bring yourself a little bit down in that moment to bring yourself back up, just to meet them. So what would you say around that? Dealing with friends that are having a bad time?

[1:00:46] Meg:

I think you’re never responsible how other people are feeling, including your friends. But I think you absolutely have a responsibility with how you’re showing up in your relationships. And I think those are two different things. And I think, especially with close relationships, but really with anyone, being in integrity with how you have committed to show up, means that sometimes you will be inconvenienced; sometimes it’s not a great time for me to talk about anything but you just had this horrific thing happen so yeah, “I’m not going to meet my needs first and we’re going to talk about your need right now because that feels important and I want to show up or you as a friend, with compassion and with selflessness, sometimes.

So, I think it’s more about getting clear on how you want to show up and then doing the best you can. And I know, by the way, sometimes the best you can, might not be what the other person really, really wants, and it might be the best you can do. And I think when you come from it like that then you don’t have the issue of getting dragged down because you’re still not responsible, you’re just showing up for your friend. You’re just holding that space and you’re being there for them, whereas when you think you’re responsible, then diving into the pool of like “You’re upset” means that you’re now holding the weight of that.

[1:02:05] Sahara:

And I think it has to do with how receptive that friend is – we all have (or have had) that friend who you keep giving the same advice to “You need to break up with him; you need to break up with him!” she calls you crying “He did this, he did that, I can’t believe what happened” you go through the whole talk and how she’s going to break with him; all the things; and then the same conversation happens again. And with that, it’s almost like you sawing away this wood board which is your friendship, and then that person’s eventually like “Dude, I’m not going to invest my energy in you when you’re not taking action and you keep going back to square one!”

[1:02:38] Meg:

Yeah, I think it’s really; being able to consciously communicate is really important, and it’s fine to say “You and I have had this exact conversation, objectively, like five times, and I’m feeling really frustrated and it’s hard for me to continue having it.”

[1:02:55] Sahara:

But I think what a lot of people do is we’re just like “I give up! Let her be with him!” Is that the best thing?

[1:03:01] Meg:

I think acceptance is one of the biggest ingredients to freedom. You don’t have to like the situation to accept it – it just means you’re going to stop arguing with what is.

[1:03:14] Sahara:

Right. But it’s like – let’s say your friend is in, again, with that negative relationship or something, she keeps complaining; you know this is a bad relationship, or it’s toxic, but she keeps going back. Does one get more involved or just say this is her lesson to learn?

[1:03:31] Meg:

I think it’s always our lesson to learn. So you can’t learn a lesson for her, you can be there for her; you can support her; you can show up; you can listen to that conversation 20 times if that’s what you want to do (I don’t think I would be able to do that in terms of my bandwidth for that) but ultimately, it’s not your lesson to learn. So your choice is either to accept what her decision is, and her reality, and wish her well and be there for her when you can; or to say “I’m having a hard time being friends with you because of the inconsistency and the lack of integrity that I’m feeling (and that’s such an important thing in my life) and seeing you not act like that is creating a real discord in my heart, and I love you.”

You could also love someone a lot and not have them in your day to day life. For periods of time I had a lot of boundaries with my dad and wouldn’t speak with him, and it doesn’t mean that I didn’t love him and that I was angry all the time – I loved him so much and I just couldn’t have him in my life for a minute.

And those are difficult things; these are like heavy boots difficult things; these aren’t like “Oh it’s fine, tell her you can’t.” These are things that are much easier to say than to do, and that are potentially catalysts for some pain and for some things that will come up. But you can’t control other people’s lives, you can accept them, and you can love them as best you can, you can tell them to fucking mediate and that’ll probably help, no big deal, but we hold on so tight to the control that we never had to begin with.

[1:05:10] Sahara:

Yeah. I think that the topic of friendship is a really interesting one because in this day and age I feel like we’re all so individual and so separate that we’ve almost let go of the art of friendship. And there isn’t a lot of willingness to do the communication and work that it takes to maintain a friendship – and I’ve even seen with some of my best friends we’re like “We need to put on a calendar when we’re going to see each other again because if this just keeps going up we’re going to stop being friends soon.” And most of us, we don’t have that retrospective or in the future thinking, and then it’s hard, because as we’re elevating and we’re becoming more conscious and we want to surround ourselves with conscious people.

Someone was telling me that Jay-Z, literally goes through everyone in Beyonce’s life before they meet her to make sure they’re on integrity, high-vibrational – from her back up dancers to everyone in her band – he wants to know them, that’s why the interviewing process is so rigorous, because he knows that you are the reflection of the people around you. So if there’s someone complaining or bringing down the vibe, that’s going to bring down her vibe, and that’s an important thing for her ‘Queendom’ to keep up. So that’s why he’s so meticulous of who gets to be around her – and imagine if we lived our lives like that! Being super-meticulous who we share energy with and the other side of that coin is – you love that person, you’ve been friends for so long, and maybe they’re not spiritually there yet, but you want to help them, and having that fine line of bringing someone else up without bringing yourself down.

[1:06:47] Meg:

Yeah, and I think you can support people and support their potential, and maybe they just play a different role in your life. Just like every romantic partnership, not every friend needs to meet all your needs.

[1:07:02] Sahara:

It’s so true! Even when we were just talking about work, it’s not every person. I think a lot of are like “I’m going to hire an assistant that does every single thing in my whole entire life” and it’s like no, that person doesn’t’; a person who’s good at tech is not with customer service, not good – we’re all different Doshas, we’re all different human designs. And just like with friendships too – you have your friends that you might – you know, I have my friends that I’m going to Ecstatic Dancing and they’re those people; and the friends that are, this business thing that just happened to me; and this-that, this-that. And I’m that type of different friend for different people too.

[1:07:35] Meg:

I think what continues to be important for me is that (and I totally agree with you, and I have that as well) that those people that I keep engaging with, all share certain values, and it’s okay if it’s a shallow version of that value because you’re still figuring out who you are and figuring out how to live with a deep level of intention and clarity and all these things. And it’s okay, also if you’re at the deep end of the pool, where you’re a master teacher of these things that I’m trying to become and trying to be, because it’s all a spectrum, there’s no destination. That’s the most cliché thing in the world but there’s no “Oh, I’ve arrived” and then once you’ve arrive we can hang out, then we’ve both arrived at the place.

So, I think for me, it’s more important that we’re both on a similar road or at least using the same map, or be friends with someone who, let’s say…

[1:08:26] Sahara:

Yeah it would be hard to be friends with someone who, let’s say, their lifestyle is completely different from yours, and you talk about all these things and then you have no understanding. It’s like if you go to your high school reunion and you might talk to your high school best friend and it’s like “So,you know..” and I feel like that’s why, pretty much all of my friends are doing – they’re authors and podcast hosts, and all kinds of stuff, and then I was like “Damn, I don’t have really do something else.” Someone mentioned to me “All of your friends have very strong personalities” I was like “I guess, maybe, that’s just because that’s what they do for their work, is their personality” and I’m like “I feel like that’s just what my conversations are about and that’s we connect on etc.”

And I think that’s why we all have that invitation to change our friends as we evolve and have friends that inspire us, and have friends that are on similar journeys as us. And you have your friends that you might have had since you were a kid – Kaphas especially, they really hold on to friendships; Pittas might have all colleagues as their friends; and Vatas might “Oh, we’re going to go to a music festival and take acid. I just made a new best friend in the bathroom”

We get to have different types of friends and I think it’s perfect that our topic really transformed into friendship and meditation because it’s like when you are your own friend that changes who you are around.

[1:09:45] Meg:

Yes, I love that. Yeah, and I love my own company; I love who I am and being by myself, and enjoying myself. And the deeper that I’ve gone into that relationship with who I am, the more that has been reflected, in again, who is attracted to me as friends, as romantic partners, as job, whatever it is, and has given me the flexibility to flow in those relationships in a really organic way – because again, those relationships don’t define who I am.

[1:10:16] Sahara:

So this is why we’ve all got to find friends that meditate so we can raise the conversation. And if your friends don’t meditate doesn’t mean you’ve got to jinx them, you can introduce them to Megan’s book.

[1:10:28] Megan:

I think too, you get really, when you know who you are, it’s easier to acknowledge and to recognize what’s important to you, what your non-negotiables are for yourself, and therefore, to some degree (not unlikeJay-Z)of what your non-negotiables are of people around you. I don’t have friends anymore that are really negative; I don’t have friends that are super-gossipy; I don’t have friends that drink in excess or do drugs in excess, because those things are non-negotiables for me. And it’s not so much that you have to – I get this question a lot because I used to work in the music industry, so people would say “Did you just get a whole new life and whole new caste of friends and characters in your life?” And I still have so many people in my life that I worked with and it’s not so much that you have to “get rid of” the people that aren’t lining up with you, it’s just that they will stop sticking to you. Once you start shifting..

[1:11:30] Sahara:

It’ll be like “She’s fucking weird”

[1:11:31] Meg:

Yeah! Exactly! Once you start shifting in how you’re acting and thinking and being, those people aren’t going to want to be around you anyway.

[1:11:38] Sahara:

And the ones who do, probably want to go on that journey too.

[1:11:41] Meg:

Exactly! So the people that are super-gossipy – I don’t engage in that kind of conversation. So they’re like “Oh, I don’t want to talk to her. She won’t go down that road.” The people that are like “Oh, I want to get fucked up” they don’t call me to go out and get fucked up anymore because (not that I was ever crazy into that) that’s not what I want to do. And when I’m like “Oh, do you want to go to a sound bath?” Guess who doesn’t want to come! So, it’s really a natural thing that starts to just happen.

[1:12:09] Sahara:

Exactly! And we all find that vibrational match for the things that we want to do, and then we can maybe go down a fun rabbit hole with friends from your old world and talk about fun old memories and kick it and enjoy it, and maybe go to a movie or something that you guys still have commonality around. And then you do your crazy past life regression with somebody you met recently.

So, we’ve got to have it all and I think that this topic of friendship is really important, and I think a lot of people have found value because, even for me and all of us, friendships can be difficult to navigate into this age and we don’t talk about them that much. I think we talk a lot about romantic relationships, so we get coaches and all of this, but with friendships it’s almost like this thing that we should just know how to do and it should be really easy, and it’s not always.

[1:13:02] Meg:

Yeah, it’s a really good point. I think the more you know yourself and love yourself, the greater your capacity to know others and to love others.

[1:13:10] Sahara:

So good!

So where can listeners connect with you, get your book?

[1:13:16] Meg:

Oh my gosh! Connect with me!

I use mostly Instagram, which is @megmonahan.

And my book is available wherever books are sold. It’s always on sale on Amazon, for literally the price of a smoothie, so go get it there. It’s real cute, it looks great with a candle on your coffee table.

[1:13:30] Sahara:

What’s it called?

[1:13:31] Meg:

It’s called “Don’t Hate, Meditate” – five easy practices to get you through the hardship and into the good.

[1:13:36] Sahara:

And I’ve got to say I love it because it feels like you’re just speaking to me; you’re just swearing; you’re just speaking so colloquially but still nice writing. I’ve tried to read meditation books before and I was like “Oh God!” But with this, it was just fun and the stories and stuff you share were so relatable.

[1:13:55] Meg:

Good. There’s a lot of – I’m very passionate about bringing it down to earth. So there’s very real ways to look at it. There’s the topic called The Spice Girls Wisdom (just enough said). And I did the audio version as well, so if you’re more of an audible person – it’s my lovely voice.

[1:14:14] Sahara:

Yes, you have a beautiful voice. Thank you so much for sharing your voice like this.

[1:14:16] Meg:

Thanks for having me Love!

[1:14:16] End of Interview

__________________________________________________________________

[1:14:18] Sahara:

How amazing was that conversation! I just love having my friends on the Podcast because it can feel like I’m just sitting and taking to a friend, and you guys all get to listen. I think that’s what we need more – real, authentic conversations that we want to have with people but we don’t have the time and space for.

So, this is really what the Podcast is about, those spiritual questions, those topics – Evolution at this time and really making it relatable because we’re all moving through the same things, even at a Universal level – so we’re all in this together Queen! And I’m here to support you!

So, don’t forget to join us in this month’s Rose Gold Goddesses Circle, we are celebrating the frequency of Lemuria, which is all about operating from the Heart, Freedom, Expression, Dance, Embodiment.

Next month we have Goddess Ixchel, which is all about connecting to the Womb and Sacred Womb Wisdom; Yoni Steams, and Mayan Abdominal Massages, and Womb Shamans and Priestesses, and all sorts of things.

And every single month in Rose Gold Goddesses we are working with a new archetype, and new frequency, and new aspect of yourself.

So, if this is calling your name; you’re craving Spiritual Sisters who are on the same journey as you, all around the world, we have over 2200 members right now and it is growing, and our Community is deepening. We’ve switched it right now to be Annual only and so it really gives you the opportunity to dive deep and really create lasting relationships while going through tons of expert-guest workshops – my courses – from my Awaken Your Powers Masterclass with Shaman Durek, to my Healing and Embodiment Through Dance Course; to my 10-day Discover Your Dharma Course, all of that is available for you when you join Rose Gold Goddesses.

So you can find out more about that at rosegoldgoddesses.com – the link is in the show notes and I am soul excited to meet you inside.

[1:16:04]

If you loved this episode, I would love to send you a free gift which is the first half of my unreleased book “Eat Right for Your Mind Body Type“. This is a different book than “Eat Feel Fresh“. My first book ever which is not released anywhere, and I am gifting it exclusively to those who leave a review of my podcast in the iTunes store. So all you’ve got to do is head over to iTunes where you’re maybe listening to this podcast and leave a review, take a screenshot that you’ve left it and email it over to me at [email protected] and I will send you back the first half of my unreleased book “Eat Right for Your Mind Body Type“, which goes all into Ayurveda, Doshas, Plant-Based Nutrition, Body Types – all of the things in a really fun and engaging way. So this is my gift to you for free for supporting the podcast. Every single review I personally read. It really helps the podcast be listened to by more people so we can raise the vibration of the planet together, and I am soul grateful to have you on this journey.

Thank you so much for listening and I’ll see you on the next episode. Namaste.

Episode 312: Don’t Hate, Meditate with Meg Monahan

By Sahara Rose

Scroll to Top