Wow! 10 years ago, I began my journey of self-discovery when I started meditating for the first time … I’m not going to lie, it was way outside of my comfort zone and during my first attempts of “trying” to be, I found the whole experience frustrating and to be quite frank “a complete waste of time”.
I “tried” to listen to guided meditations after being encouraged by my girlfriend at the time and, more often than not, I found myself irritated by the experience, irritated by the “annoying” guides voice, irritated by my own inability to focus, irritated by the time I wasted trying to sit cross-legged whilst focusing on my breath. Years later, I now realise that it wasn’t the guides voice, the seating position or my own inability to focus that was irritating me, but rather it was a reflection of my own internal sense of irritation at life, the stresses, strains, and how I was showing up every day. I was lost and I was self-medicating through alcohol and recreational drugs.
One day it changed though, that day was when I met “my guides”, two people who transformed and changed my life forever; with their soft soothing tones and their incredible ability to provide a calming tonic to the everyday stresses I was facing as a busy London-based executive. Like the animals going into the ark, they came in two ; one was a softly spoken Indian gentlemen called Deepak Chopra (last night a Deepak saved my life), who bamboozled and inspired my mind with talk of consciousness and the field of pure potentiality, and the other was a Scotsman with a voice like velvet, Andrew Johnson, who helped me get to sleep each night and to “relax”.
Little did Deepak or Andrew know; they saved my life and they became my hero’s. They became my gurus and by listening to these legends every single day, I began to heal, and I began to walk a path that was about to change everything!!
6 years later from the days of listening to Deepak and Andrew, I’d left the corporate world and began to point myself in a very different direction. I’d been meditating daily for 3 years, I was fascinated with Eastern mysticism and religion, I’d explored gong baths, healing ceremonies, kundalini yoga and I’d sat with a shaman to drink the indigenous medicine of Ayahuasca …I was beginning to realise my own spiritual nature and I felt completely awake.
I received a call one day from a good friend, Gary, who I was helping launch a social enterprise (The Mindful Enterprise) aimed at helping children gain access to Mindfulness Meditation. Gary called and said;
“Hey mate, I’d love for you to attend a meeting with me at Browns on George Street (Edinburgh) next week if you are free? I’m meeting a guy called Andrew Johnson and I think he may be able to help us …are you free?”
It took me a moment to gather my senses …
“THE Andrew Johnson?” I managed to regain my composure (just).
“Yeah, do you know him?” Gary asked.
“Do I know him? The guys a legend, he saved me. Well he doesn’t know that, but his apps saved me. I used to listen to his relax app to help me sleep. You have no idea how much this guy has helped me. I’ll be there”.
I left the conversation feeling excited and nervous at the same time.
A week later, I’m sitting in Brown’s. I arrive early. I’m trying to settle my nerves as I await the arrival of THE Andrew Johnson …
As Andrew walked in, I was telling myself “stay calm and relax” and then as he approached me, I thought “sod it”
I stood up, gave Andrew a huge hug and said …
“Andrew Johnson you legend”
“Well I’ve never been called a legend before but thank you”, Andrew replied humbly.
Fast forward another 4 years and I’m delighted to say that Andrew and I are now great friends, we’ve hung out, we’ve supported one another on our respective paths and we’ve had the chance to “vibe” together at events, spreading the magic of meditation, and all things related to consciousness, to the masses.
I’m now delighted, honoured and humbled to say that I will be sharing the Main Stage with Andrew Johnson at The Mindful Living Show (in London, on Saturday 7th March). Andrew and I will be exploring the concept of “Breaking Down Barriers – The Power of Meditation”.
Here is a brief description:
In this fireside chat, world-renowned meditation guide Andrew Johnson and his great friend Alister Gray (founder of Mindful Talent) explore the topic of meditation and how a simple daily practice can literally save the world and awaken people to experience their true nature.
This is going to be a truly awesome experience and one I’m really excited about on a personal level.
Meditation has helped me realise the true nature of who I Am. My sense of connection to the world and those around me is indescribable and I feel such a privilege to serve others and help them to realise a greater sense of freedom inside and out.