Why meditate? Spending time in quiet space and breathing has always been a life saver for me. Adding a mantra takes my practice to the next level. There is a ton of research out that supports the notion that positive mantras and breathing has powerful effects on health and wellbeing. She is one of the most successful models married to the most successful quarterback. Listen in as we learn from Gisele on why this practice works for her and why it can work for you too. Enjoy.
Let’s talk about meditation. You started practicing in your early 20s—why?
I was going through a challenging time in my life and I started practicing yoga. I was doing a lot of Pranayama breath work, which helps balance the left and right sides of your brain, I was doing three-day silence retreats, and eventually that led me to start practicing meditation. Every time I had a challenging time and needed clarity, I would do meditation, but I wasn’t consistent about it. I would go on vacation for 10 days and meditate for an hour every day, then I would come back and maybe I wouldn’t do it every day. Whenever I felt a lot of intensity coming from all over the place, I would decide to meditate. It wasn’t until about two or three years ago that I met Mario [Orsatti, a director of the David Lynch Foundation], and he introduced me to Transcendental Meditation, that I really started to meditate more regularly.
And how did picking up the technique of Transcendental Meditation change your practice?
Well, it’s only 20 minutes two times a day, and I thought, “I’ve been doing an hour a day, so I like that!”
What is it that you like about meditation?
People have been practicing meditation for thousands of years and the reason is because it’s really a wonderful tool to grant you a different access to yourself. It’s a different awareness and new level of peace. Once you learn how to do it, it’s yours forever—you can always access that. It’s an energy inside of you. It’s not something you can lose that’s outside of yourself. It’s not physical; it’s something much deeper than that. The more you practice and the more you reach it, the more amazing it becomes.
Where do you meditate?
The thing about meditation is that you can do it anywhere. And I’ve done it everywhere. On planes, the back of a taxi, sitting in hair and makeup—because of my job, sometimes you’re doing makeup for hours and hours and hours—in my bed in the morning, in nature, anywhere. All you need is 20 minutes. Even with a schedule like mine, I can find 20 minutes. For me, I love to do it early in the morning before the kids are up. The energy is very calm.
Has meditation helped you as a parent?
Well, I like to do it in the mornings because the energy is very calm. It’s dark; I like to put a candle on. For me, it’s a ritual. The way I see it is that you have to put the oxygen mask on yourself first before you can put the oxygen mask on the people around you. If I nourish myself in the morning, when the house energy starts revving up, you have so much more to give. As a mother, you’re always giving. It’s important to give something to yourself, so you can give from a place of being full, instead of giving from a place of being depleted, which isn’t healthy for you or for the family. If I don’t do it in the morning, it’s a very different energy—the dogs are barking, the kids are saying they are hungry, it’s so chaotic, there’s this and that . . . when I wake up just 30 minutes before everyone else, it makes a world of a difference. It pays off.
You used the word “ritual.” What’s your process, exactly, when you meditate?
I get out of my bed because everybody is still sleeping. I go downstairs, light a candle, and I have warm water with lemon every morning to start my system. I have my warm water; I have my candle; I just sit on the couch, in silence, with my back straight, and close my eyes. Some people have a mantra, but because I’ve been practicing for so long, I like to focus on my third eye. I bring the energy right to my third eye. Sometimes I sit in silence and enjoy the silence, but usually I’m meditating on a certain question. And almost always—I can find the answer.
have a healthy week