I’ve been meditating pretty much every single day for the past three years. Whether it’s a couple of minutes lying down at the end of my yoga practice, a lengthier, 20-minute seated session, or even an hour-long mindfulness walk outside, meditation is a huge and very important part of my life. That’s why I never could’ve been prepared for what happened when I stopped meditating for two weeks. I’ll give you a hint: It wasn’t pretty.
If that sounds a bit melodramatic to you, let me put it this way: I genuinely use my yoga and meditation practice as a way to support my mental health. They both play huge roles in how I manage my anxiety, so really, I should’ve known nothing good would come from my short, but unintentional hiatus. BTW, no, I did not plan to take a break from meditation, nor did I make a conscious effort to stop the practice. It just kind of happened — because, life, you know? — and before I knew it, everything was in shambles.
And if you still think I’m being kind of extra about this whole thing, I reached out to Veronica Parker, a kundalini yoga teacher and meditation coach, who tells me, if you’ve had a consistent meditation practice and suddenly stop doing it, it can take a pretty big toll on both your body and your mind. “When you stop meditating, your mind can lose its sense of clarity and focus,” Parker tells Elite Daily. “It could feel foggy and not as sharp. Decisions become more difficult to make, more anxiety can pop up, and you can [begin to] second-guess yourself.” Trust me when I say this couldn’t be a more accurate description of what ensued on the last day of my two-week meditation hiatus.