Give in to Serenity…Really?!?!

By Shannon Albarelli, Psy.D.

Sit down and do nothing? What?! That’s the key to serenity? But what about the dishes, the groceries, cleaning the house …. Am I just supposed to live in chaos so I can close my eyes and think about my chaos instead of doing something about it? Plus, meditation is for those strange people who don’t live a normal life and don’t have the same stresses as me: a house, 2 young boys, a husband and 2 businesses. I am going to STAY AWAY ….

Overwhelm. Overwhelm. Anxiety. Anxiety. Stress. Stress. Okay fine… maybe I will try it. I am skeptical but am in desperate need for some peace and calm. I am trained in Transcendental Meditation by a teacher who exudes the chill vibe; nothing seems to fluster her, she is happy, that is what I want. I start meditating using a mantra that is sing-songy and has no meaning. My first experience, I feel I am able to unplug from my daily stresses– they are there, but I see them versus feel them. Okay, I am going to commit to this and see where it takes me.

A year and a half later I can tell you that it has changed my life.

It seems dramatic, I know. But, it’s true. When I close my eyes and turn my attention inwards I still have a million thoughts running through my head, including my grocery list, but then it floats away and more thoughts come and go, and I can just see my thoughts without getting trapped and caught in the mess of them. I have more clarity and am able to prioritize my to-do list with more fluidity. I am calmer as my children are battling for my attention by screaming at the top of their lungs …. I can even laugh at their ridiculous behavior! The way I relate to myself is with more kindness and compassion.

If I am upset, I recognize it and also see that it will pass. Sometimes I come out of my meditations feeling so grateful to be healthy and alive, and to have a beautiful family. Who am I? My husband starts to notice and now on any given Saturday or Sunday he looks at me and says, “why don’t you go meditate?” because he knows I come out of it a much better person. And last but not least before I go on and on and bore you …. I have been sleeping so much better! I used to get into bed, exhausted and ecstatic about finally being able to sleep and then …. ping …. All my thoughts and worries from they day would arise and my head would be spinning and I couldn’t get to sleep.

By meditating in the morning and then during “happy hour” before dinner, I would have already processed most of my day and by the time I would get into bed,  I could get to sleep so much faster! Seriously, meditation has changed my life, and although I consider myself slightly weird, I don’t live on the fringe of society, and I am just trying to thrive in my own fast-paced life.

Dr. Shannon Albarelli is a clinical psychologist who specializes in treating a range of mental health conditions including depression, anxiety, post traumatic stress disorder, grief/bereavement and mood disorders. Her number one priority is to bring happiness and well-being to patient’s lives by restoring their mental balance. To find out more about her practice, visit


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You’ll Be SHOCKED to Find Out
What Your Furniture Says About You!

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