Ask Linda

Meet Linda.

Whether you are thinking of learning Transcendental Meditation, are a new meditator or have been doing TM for decades, questions about meditation come up. How does TM differ from other forms of meditation? What effect does it have on the body and mind? How will I fit it into my day? What are the origins of meditation?

Wherever you are in your journey, Linda and her team of experts are here to answer your questions about the Transcendental Meditation technique—whatever they may be.

Submit your question to Linda at infocanada@tm-women.org. Put Ask Linda in the subject line. Not all questions will be published but all will be answered. It’s also fun to read other people’s questions and answers.

The last time I meditated was years ago. How do I start again?

It can be frustrating to fall off your self-care routine, but starting TM again is easy. If you still remember your personal instruction, you can start again today, first thing in the morning before breakfast, or this afternoon before dinner. For these first sessions after a long break, it’s probably a good idea to secure a private and quiet place. Sit in a comfortable chair and close your eyes. After that, take it as it comes. Remember—it’s an effortless and natural technique.

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How can I fit TM into my schedule when I leave the house at 7:00 in the morning for work and don’t return until 7:15 at night?

I am a thirty-seven-year-old woman who works at a downtown bank in Toronto.  I drop off my daughters in daycare at 7:00 am and rush to grab the TTC [the public bus service in Toronto]. I get to my desk by 8:30 and usually finish work by 6 pm. My husband picks up the kids, but I don’t get home until 7:15 pm to cook dinner, bathe the girls and do some last minute emails before bed.

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I learned TM but never practiced. How do I relearn?

I learned TM many years ago, but I never practiced after the course was over. A few friends have recently shared their beautiful experiences and I would like to relearn. How do I do that? I do not want to go back to my original teacher, as I didn’t enjoy the session. Also, do you ever do retreats?

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Will Sitting to Meditate Make Me Put on the Pounds?

I have a problem with weight gain. Will sitting to meditate twice a day make me put on the pounds?

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Do I need to wear special clothes to meditate?

The short answer is no. You can meditate in a dress with nylon stockings and high heels on, and it will work just fine.

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My 12-year-old daughter was just diagnosed with ADHD. Can TM help her focus even though she has trouble sitting still?

It might seem like the last thing your energetic daughter could do is sit to meditate for ten minutes twice a day, yet TM has been found to help kids just like your daughter. In one school for ADHD children in Washington, D.C., the parents, teachers and children were skeptical that TM could help. Yet when the children were taught the Transcendental Meditation technique, they found out they could not only sit still with their eyes closed twice a day, but practicing TM made them feel calmer and more focused in class.

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I’m a police officer who finished training but I still have to pass the physical. Will TM help me gain more strength and endurance?

First of all, congratulations! You’ve undertaken a truly life-changing goal and reached it. Now you have one more hurdle to conquer, and I wish you all success in that endeavor.

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Can I meditate on the subway? How about the sauna?

Life is busy—and even the thought of fitting in a daily meditation practice can be daunting. The beauty of the TM technique is that you can practise it anywhere you can sit down, close your eyes and transcend the chatter of your mind.

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What is a mantra?

This is an important question as the Transcendental Meditation technique does involve the use of a mantra. One definition is a sound, or frequency, that has beneficial effects on the mind and body. We all know that some sounds are not so healing, such as heavy metal music, which has been shown in research to actually make plants wilt.

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I’ve heard that TM can lower your blood pressure, boost your creativity and help with anxiety. How can a simple technique create such a big effect?

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How long does it take to learn to meditate?

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How can I fit TM into my schedule when I leave the house at 7:00 in the morning for work and don’t return until 7:15 at night?

I am a thirty-seven-year-old woman who works at a downtown bank in Toronto.  I drop off my daughters in daycare at 7:00 am and rush to grab the TTC [the public bus service in Toronto]. I get to my desk by 8:30 and usually finish work by 6 pm. My husband picks up the kids, but I don’t get home until 7:15 pm to cook dinner, bathe the girls and do some last minute emails before bed.

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Quote of the Week

“Transcendental Meditation has opened up a new world of good health and well-being for me. I am so much more in control of my life and realise that there is something I can do to reduce my stress levels and feel more relaxed. It is such a blessing—I am grateful to have found it.”

—Aisling Drury-Byrne, Musician

“The experience of TM is deeper than any level of relaxation you’ve ever experienced. And yet, your mind is awake inside and you’re not asleep.”

—Bob Roth, CEO of the David Lynch Foundation

“Transcendental Meditation gives you what you need, when you need it. It’s literally changed my life. Some of the clearest ideas or epiphanies I’ve had in life happened during or after meditating. Everything becomes clear and the truth starts coming out.”

—Hugh Jackman

“I believe that intuition is a gift of all human beings and meditation is something that could really facilitate that strengthening of intuition. I believe that if everyone were to meditate — and I strongly believe that everyone should — that the world would be a better place. . .”

—Krista Kim, artist and founder of Techism