Meditation is a great quality of life booster. How much you meditate, not just in terms of length but for how long you stick with the practice, is one of the best predictors as to whether meditation will improve your life over the long run or not.
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The benefits of hour-long meditations have long been praised by those who engage in the practice.
While it’s not easy to do hour-long meditations when starting, it can be totally worth it, considering the end result is a quieter mind with clearer thinning and less clutter that gets in the way of becoming a high performer. But what exactly would happen if you were to meditate for two hours?
The benefits of meditation don’t come right away, so if you were to meditate for two hours as a beginner, first off, it would be hard to keep your attention on the meditation for that long, disrupting the meditation and making it less of an experience, which in turn, would lead to not much change, at least in the short term.
However, if you practice consistently, it’s easier to bump the time you meditate as you teach your mind to get used to the practice.
For those that already know what meditation is, based on their own experience, meditating for two hours will be easier and is likely to provide intensified rewards, such as making you an overall calmer person and merging meditation with your day-to-day life.
Almost to the point where your default state of mind becomes mindful and you start relieving the stress-free life you had before responsibilities got in your way and took away the joy of the present.
While everyone’s experience is different with hour-long meditations, below are some of the things you are likely to experience if you engage in hour-long meditations.
Calmer Overall Life
While 20 minutes a day of meditation is already enough for most people to achieve a calmer life, sustaining it for longer and experiencing a sort of intensified calm where people lose the notion of time is something that can often be found with longer meditations.
It doesn’t have to go as long as two hours, simply, meditating for a moderately long amount like 30 to 40 minutes is a point where many reach a peak of calmness with their meditation, which, once this state is achieved, they are likely to go on for longer, to the point of reaching two to three hours because it’s so enjoyable.
Many monks meditate this long. They’ve developed a sort of discipline that even the average individual can develop, should they choose to put their faith in meditation, changing their overall outlook in life and wiring themselves to prioritize long-term lasting gratification while fully enjoying the now, as opposed to giving in to the temptations presented by the mind.
Emotions tend to be unreliable because they are so volatile and go away so soon, but that’s less likely to happen once someone gets a taste of the calmness meditation has to offer.
A stronger willpower is a byproduct of hour-long meditations, as you’ve passed the hardest hurdles presented by the mind.
As the mind no longer has the same effect on you, being calmer becomes easier as there are few to no obstacles hindering you from making better decisions. Not being calm can push us to make impulse decisions.
The calmer you feel on the inside, the more likely that’s gonna be projected on the outside, and thus, anything that would otherwise disrupt this calmness no longer does.
Not only do we overflow with calmness with long meditations, but also joy, which can be contagious to others, as others can feel your vibe.
Things Start Going More Your Way
While you can’t control what will happen to you throughout the day, the less you’re attached to something in particular happening, the more liberated you become.
We tend to attach our happiness to our expectations, but this is a high-risk-high-reward activity. With meditation, it can aid your logical and analytical thinking, as well as boost your intuition and find a balance between gut feeling and logical thinking.
It’s hard to know exactly when we should use our intuition and when we should use our logical thinking, but with two hour-long meditations, we get more in touch with ourselves and our mind, and many times tap into deeper parts of ourselves that can unveil what we truly want, compared to what we think we want.
When meditating, we many times get in touch with our purest self, with all the flaws that make us who we are. We ought to respond with acceptance and acknowledgment, rather than denying that something is a part of us when it is.
Two-hour meditations, while there are no guarantees for anything to happen and neither should you have any expectations, if you allow yourself to meditate for so long, you allow yourself to get to know your true needs while emphasizing the variables within your control to create the best outcome.
This leads to better planning, and better planning makes things more likely to go the way you want and need them to, and even if they don’t, you don’t wound up defeated as you’re not outcome-dependent.
Most of the spiritual experiences happen during long meditations. Be it post-meditation or during the meditation.
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But spiritual experiences can make you more dissociated from reality, because meditation and reality starts mixing in, and since meditation can be such a profound spiritual experience, you may start questioning what’s real and what’s not.
I’ve talked about disassociation when we explored what happened if we meditated too much.
Not everyone is ready for a spiritual experience, and some will never experience anything spiritual in their meditation, and this can be due to many variables such as their readiness or objective with meditation.
Better Time Management
With meditation, gaining focus becomes a byproduct, especially if meditations are long, since more discipline will usually lead to more focus.
How it manifests in your daily life can be in the form of more efficient time management for the things you truly find meaningful, as you start allocating your time to things that closely align with your goals and purpose, without getting distracted along the way.
Meditation is a form of self-love, and that can be reflected on how they use their time.
Time is scarce and is something we can never get back. The more you respect your time, the more you respect yourself.
With two-hour-long meditation, you learn the ropes of following a routine, so long as the long meditation is combined with consistency.
This can, in turn, create a domino effect where you carefully allocate your time to what matters to you the most.
Meditation gives you insights into yourself and can bring purpose into your path. Many even turn to meditation to find themselves and their purpose.
Better Habit Adoption
Let’s face it, meditating for two hours is hard. And you don’t have to, to reach a deep level of relaxation.
But once you do, you cultivate one of the most difficult habits. Because the idea of sitting quietly with your thoughts for a long time, at the surface, doesn’t sound appealing, especially if you’re not guaranteed any rewards but rather, allow for that to happen. Imagine doing that for two hours.
Discipline alone isn’t likely to do it, but having a goal without attaching to it can help as a major driver. But more so is starting small and increasing the count.
However, once you build upon one good habit, as meditation is, picking up another one becomes easier.
Your willpower already gets strengthened by meditation, even if it happens to be shorter than two hours.
When mindfulness becomes your default state of operating, you’re likely to apply it to everything you do, even if it’s as simple as eating, making better diet choices, and feeding the cycle of feeling good.
Your diet has an impact on your well-being. A consistent meditation practice with a poor diet simply doesn’t go hand in hand, but fortunately, one thing leads to another.
Two-hour-long meditations can be extreme, especially for beginners, but for those who want to take the practice to the next level, it becomes easier because they already have a notion of what meditation feels like and they wouldn’t be starting from scratch with an unrealistic goal.
Losing The Notion of Time
Perhaps, one of the most amazing benefits of long meditations such as two to three hours is that they can feel like they happened immediately.
Especially if you enter a flow state, where your attention is locked in the practice and you enter a whole different world.
One where you can tap into your subconscious among other things. But the perception of time can many times be distorted, and by the end of the long meditation, you feel like a different person, in the sense that you cleansed yourself and removed layers of negativity and clutter, that didn’t let the mind be at peace.
All without worrying about how long you had left for the meditation to finish. Reaching this point is more commonly seen in monks and individuals who have conditioned themselves to meditate for long.
It’s common for long meditators to become more aware of things, even if these things are small, and be appreciative of these things. Gratitude is a recipe for a happier and more fulfilling life. Once gratitude is present, scarcity is absent and there are fewer reasons to be unhappy.
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Once you start appreciating small wins along the way, it creates a positive cycle where it keeps you walking a path that leads to bigger things.
After all, what you lay your focus on is what grows, once you start focusing on the positive, and the solution to things, that’s what your mind defaults to.
You can end up getting something positive and even a win out of circumstances that would otherwise be regarded as negative.
More so, hour-long meditations gives you a more balanced view of everything, as in there being two sides of the same coin.
After all, there simply can be no light when darkness is present, and this objective and realistic thinking helps you make better decisions while being grateful for what you already have, which, indirectly, leads to a more joyful day-to-day life.
One could say gratitude leads to an abundance mindset, something that aids many in the pursuit of their ambition.
Should Everyone Meditate For Two Hours or More as The End Goal?
This will often depend on the person since not everyone has the time to fit two hours of meditation into their schedule.
Many will do just fine with short meditations, whereas others, that want to experience meditations to a level that had been unknown to them before will benefit more from longer meditations. The benefits are gonna be intensified with longer meditations.
But long meditations are not ideal for novices, as building consistency is far more important than meditating one time for long. It’s impossible to say for sure what you will experience if you were to meditate for two hours.
The only way you can find out is by trying it for yourself, but long meditators are likely to experience what I outlined above. Even if many won’t need to meditate that long.
The most important thing is picking a time and routine you know you can stick to, and if you want to overcome any limits or put that limit to the test, you can bump that time.
However, it’s worth noticing that there are individuals that never meditate for as long as two hours, limit their practice to just 20 minutes, and still manage to have sensations that would mimic awakening or enlightenment.
Now, from a discipline point of view, it makes sense for most meditators to try to shoot for hour-long meditations as it can have a drastic impact on the way they operate by default and reach depths that may not be possible to achieve with shorter meditations, but everyone is different.
Advanced meditators meditate for long as a means to have an easier life because meditating for long can be difficult, but if difficulty becomes the norm, what was once difficult becomes normal, as in us becoming psychologically stronger for any challenge life presents us.
Anything can happen outside of our control that can shake our peace, but this becomes less of a risk if we prepare ourselves internally where no matter if the stock-market of life goes up or down, our peace remains intact.
20 Minutes Can Be Enough For Many
Not everyone has the time or patience to become an advanced meditator, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
Consistency is still king in the practice, and it’s desirable to have several 20-minute meditations every day, for a week as opposed to doing one two-hour-long meditation.
However, while long meditations aren’t recommended for beginners, some that want to put their discipline to the test can combine short and long meditations and compare how they feel at the end of a period. It’s better to set a deadline here to have statistically significant results.
One long meditation session can make you feel blissful, whereas, in another instance, it doesn’t replicate the same sensations, since we go through different phases and seasons during our meditations, where we sometimes get in touch with darker parts of ourselves, and other times, are presented with the bliss and peace of meditation.
Doing a month of short meditations (10-30 minutes a day) and a month of long meditation (1-3 Hours a day) should give many an idea as to whether long meditations become their new normal or not and results that are more significant to make a reasonable choice. But I don’t recommend doing this experiment if you’re starting.
I recommend this experiment for those that already know the ropes of meditation and are a few months in and are ready for a new challenge. It’s okay to just do short meditations throughout your entire meditative life if that’s what you find works for you. Always listen to your mind and body at the end of meditation.
On the other hand, hour-long meditations can make you more reactive to things, given that it can intensify anything you’re feeling.
As you expand your scope for expression, this can go both ways, even if, for the most part, it tends to go in a positive direction, but it’s something to be aware of.
After all, you experience your rawest self. Some respond positively to this, while others aren’t as confrontational.