How Transcendental Meditation helped me succeed

Long before it cools down, Ray Dalio credit His financial success is due to a simple practice: daily meditation.

The 72-year-old billionaire closes his eyes twice a day and repeats a short mantra in his head for 20 minutes each time. CNBC Make It. It’s a practice called Transcendental Meditation (TM), which Dalio says he adopted in 1969 — six years before he founded the Westport, Connecticut-based hedge fund Bridgewater Associates.

Over the next five decades, Dalio built Bridgewater into the world’s largest hedge fund before stepping down as co-CEO in 2017. Today, Bridgewater manages more than $150 million in assets.

Since stepping down, Dalio says he’s been on a mission to share widely the knowledge that has made him successful. That includes his meditation practice, which he once called “the most important reason for any success I’ve had.”

Here’s an inside look at those meditations, and how Dalio says they help:

Inside Dalio .’s 20-minute meditation sessions

The first step, Dalio says, is to find a quiet space. Then, sit comfortably, close your eyes, and think about your mantra.

In TM, you don’t share your mantra – it’s an exclusive practice where you learn your personal mantra in a four-day training course course, which can cost you between $380 and $960. But a common example, Dalio says, is the syllable: “om”.

Once you’ve got your spell, “you sit there in peace and you repeat that spell over and over,” he says. Eventually, repetition will replace the rest of your thinking, bringing you into a transcendental state.

“You are peaceful. You are quiet,” he said. “You’re not awake, but you’re not asleep.”

On a typical day, Dalio does one 20-minute session as soon as he wakes up in the morning and another right before dinner. Each one, he says, is like a “20-minute vacation” that reduces anxiety and puts him in a state of relaxation – helping him make better business decisions.

It’s more important to do two sessions a day, he says, than trying to do them at the same time every day. If work commitments disrupt his normal routine, he will add a meditation elsewhere in his schedule to maintain a two-day-a-day pace.

He says that the more you do it, the easier it is to realize during the day when meditation might be necessary: ​​”You might feel a little nervous, or whatever, and you say [to yourself], ‘Oh, I need to meditate.’

Why his meditations are both ‘wonderful and frustrating’ – and it’s worth it in the end

Search from 2016 shows that practicing TM can help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. For Dalio, there’s another bonus: “When you’re meditating, these great ideas come to you.”

It’s both “wonderful and frustrating,” he explains, since the point of meditation is to put your thoughts aside and focus on your mantra. “Sometimes I almost want to have a pencil and paper by my side,” he says. “I don’t want to lose the idea.”

Dalio’s Theory: Great ideas come to you in meditation because you’re tapping into your subconscious, where your creativity tends to flourish. He compares it to the relaxing feeling you experience in a hot bath and letting creative ideas come to you.

“When you want to be creative, you don’t say I will work hard and think about being creative,” he said.

Although Dalio resists the urge to write down his ideas during his meditation sessions, he says he’s better equipped them to make tough decisions.

“I’ll see things more clearly,” he said.

Do not miss:

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Billionaire Ray Dalio: The most successful people usually do better than this one thing How Transcendental Meditation helped me succeed

Emma James

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