I Meditated 15 Minutes a Day for 30 Days: Here’s What Happened

I have been meditating for the past 10 years on and off, and it is one of the things that has massively reduced my anxiety and improved my relationship with myself. But, for the past few months or so, I have fallen out of the habit of meditation. Because of that, I created a challenge for myself: meditate for at least 15 minutes for 30 days straight. In this episode, I’ll be sharing my journey, what I learned, and the challenges along the way, in addition to practical tips to help you reap the benefits of meditation in your own life.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • 10+ direct benefits I noticed from meditating consistently
  • The challenges I experienced, and the uncomfortable experiences I faced through meditation
  • Practical tips to start your own meditation journey so you can be more present in your life



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INTRO/OUTRO MUSIC: Rescue Me (Instrumental) by Aussens@iter (c) copyright 2018 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/tobias_weber/57990 Ft: Copperhead

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I’ve been meditating on and off for the past 10 years, and it is one of the things that has massively helped when it comes to my anxiety and my mental health in general. And it’s also improved my relationship with myself. But for the past few months or so, I’ve fallen out of the habit of meditation.

Because of that, I decided to create a challenge for myself. Meditate for at least 15 minutes for 30 days straight. In this episode, I’ll be sharing my journey, what I learned, and the challenges along the way, in addition to practical tips to help you to reap the benefits of meditation in your own life.

Welcome to Calmly Coping. My name is Tati Garcia, and I’m a licensed therapist and

coach specializing in high functioning anxiety. I help high achievers stop putting themselves last so they can feel more calm, balanced, and confident from within. If this topic interests you, then please like, subscribe and hit the notification bell so you’ll be notified every time I release a new episode.

Thank you so much for tuning in. First, let’s talk about my journey. So this was kind of a rocky start. I originally started this on March 20th of 2024 and I got through until about day eight. And during this time I, and during actually the entire process. I kept a journal where I logged just a few sentences each day of what the meditation I was doing was, what the day was, and then a few sentences about what I noticed, how I was feeling, what came up, any sorts of thoughts or reflections.

For the first few days, I noticed a lot of tiredness coming up, thoughts about planning, anxiety about forgetting things, and Knowing myself personally, those are the things that tend to come up, especially the latter two. The thoughts about planning, thinking about my to do list, what’s coming up in the future, and maybe things coming up in my mind that I had forgotten or don’t want to forget, and so I want to write them down in the middle of my meditation, and then I kind of repeat them over and over again in my mind so that I don’t forget them.

But unfortunately, about March 28th, I had to abandon this plan because I started getting sick. I got pretty badly sick. I came down with the flu and I thought about and considered meditating, but it just was not happening. So I then restarted on April 4th. Once I started to get better. And this time around I stuck with 30 days.

Meditating for 15 minutes a day, and the way that I meditated was I primarily used the mindfulness dot com app. So this is an app that I consistently use myself, if not on a daily basis, pretty consistently, at least Since I’ve started this challenge, I was using it before then, but like I said, I wasn’t being as consistent.

And the thing that I like about this app is that there is a daily meditation and it’s kind of like a few minutes of a coaching prompt or a suggestion or something that is. a mindset shift or a different way of thinking or just something that is oftentimes encouraging and inspiring and then followed by a meditation and you can choose the amount of time that you want.

So if you only have five minutes versus if you want to do a 20 or 30 minute meditation, you can customize it. This episode is in no way sponsored by mindfulness. com, although I am an affiliate because I do really endorse and support

So that was what I used throughout this journey, interspersed with certain moments where if I felt like there was a lot going on in my mind, I would just do a silent meditation. So I just set a timer for whatever the amount of time was and then do more of a choiceless awareness. So being aware of maybe my breathing or being aware of sounds or just watching my thoughts as they went by.

So here is what I noticed during this process. super distracted. I would be thinking a lot about the future, what I had to do, planning things I had forgotten, like I just mentioned. There are also many different emotions that I noticed throughout this journey. Of course, given this is spread out throughout 30 days, so I can’t necessarily concisely describe every single emotion that came up, but especially in the beginning, I noticed there was a lot of frustration coming up.

So, reactivity, like maybe there were noises in the background and I was getting frustrated that those noises were happening and it was pulling away my focus. Or maybe there were feelings of boredom and thinking about I have so many things to do today and I’m bored with just sitting here. Or maybe there were feelings of the desire to rush forward or this urgency to go to the next thing.

And these were all things that I started to become more aware of that were already happening in the background. But. meditating allowed me to actually confront them and be present with them. In addition to a lot of different physical sensations. So I noticed a lot of tension in my body and it made me more aware that during moments of tension or stress, I tend to tense my leg or, you know, it tends to be like my lower back where I tend to have tension.

So I would notice myself tensing my lower back. tightening up my muscles without even realizing it until I caught myself. There would be tension maybe in my chest if anxiety was present or behind my eyes and my face, my back, like I mentioned. And the thing is, these experiences and what really is powerful about meditation is that these were things that were present for me.

And we’re potentially unconsciously driving my behaviors, unconsciously driving the way that I felt throughout my day without me even being aware of it because I wasn’t recognizing it. I wasn’t being there and I wasn’t noticing what was happening. And this could be happening for you as well. So maybe you have these tendencies where your mind tends to think about the future or plan about things, or maybe you’re feeling tensed and you’re tensing up your body and it’s reinforcing that stress and anxiety you’re feeling, or maybe you’re being reactive to certain things that are happening in your life.

And these things are automatically happening on autopilot without you actually choosing how to act in a certain situation, choosing how to respond. Now, I also noticed pleasant experiences and outcomes as I went through this journey and as a result of the process. So to give you a sense of. some examples of what I noticed on day seven specifically I noticed quote an inner restlessness with a well of peace and groundedness at the same time and this was something that the more that I practiced the more that I noticed this happening so maybe there would be some discomfort or difficult emotions but I also noticed this kind of inner sense of peace of being grounded of being okay even though there was all of this potential chaos happening on the surface.

One way that I’ve described meditation in the past in my mind, I’m not sure if I’ve shared it here before, but a lot of times for me, it feels like at least, you know, especially when you’re first starting meditation and then the more that you practice it, especially the first few minutes or even majority of a I kind of equate it to as though you’re skimming The top of a pond, you’re kind of like skimming the algae or whatever kind of accumulates on the top of a pond off to get to the clear surface underneath the clear, the clarity, the calmness underneath.

And that’s what I often experience, especially in the beginning. It was like, the first moments were me kind of skimming off the stuff, the gunk that had built up all of this urgency and anxiety and these negative thoughts and this I need to do this next until I was able to go beneath that and recognize that calmness, that peace, that groundedness underneath.

And on day 11, this was a quote that I wrote down. There was an underlying calm presence there of being with the body as it is. And that is one thing that has been massively powerful about meditation. It’s about accepting what is here. not about trying to change it, not about trying to get rid of it or resist it.

And a lot of that does come up because as humans, we want to be with pleasant experiences and avoid uncomfortable experiences. And so because of that, that can kind of leave us in this place of constantly avoiding the uncomfortable thoughts, the uncomfortable emotions, and that actually makes them even more ever present, even more powerful.

Because oftentimes, those thoughts, those emotions, those experiences just want to be acknowledged and recognized. And once we can do that, and once we can be with them, then we are actually teaching our minds and our bodies that we can handle this discomfort, and it doesn’t have to really rock or, you know, Negatively interfere with our day to day day 17.

I put quote I found I was so much more able to sit comfortably in stillness today than in the past The presence felt peaceful But I don’t want to give you the impression that every day was perfect and this was just the more and more I went On the more peace I felt and I was in the state of enlightenment because that’s not reality day 22 I wrote busy mind today.

I also noticed feelings of tiredness underneath my breathing and thoughts This was a sign for me that I need some alone and recharging time And day 24, I put some resistance to meditating today, probably because I needed it. It allowed me to connect to the underlying gripping and anxiety I’ve been experiencing and to release some of it.

Now to go back to those benefits that I experienced. So I experienced less overwhelm, more clarity, more focus. better listening skills, and also an improved ability for what people said. An improved ability to be present with people, listening to them, and being curious. And this is especially important given what my job is as a therapist, where oftentimes I am listening to people.

And so having that improved presence. really positively impact not just my personal relationships but also my ability to effectively be a therapist and be present for my clients. Also, I was less distractible. I also had improved emotion regulation and more control. I actually remember noticing moments where I was able to recognize strong emotions that were coming up where there was anger, frustration, and in the past, maybe I would have been super reactive.

I noticed that space, that place where I had a choice, and I noticed the emotions coming up, but I was able to sit back and actually choose a healthier response. I was able to actually be aware and identify what is the best way to respond in this situation so that it has the outcome of not turning into a conflict or not making me more frustrated.

And I was able to actually choose those responses more of the time. I was also better able to listen to myself and what I needed. This in itself was huge. And especially if you’re somebody who struggles with high functioning anxiety, if you’re somebody who is a people pleaser, if you’re somebody who is dealing with burnout or tends to get in that place, just the act of listening to your body and listening to your mind and recognizing When you need to take a break, recognizing when maybe you’re starting to feel overwhelmed and something needs to change, those moments are super powerful for allowing you to learn more about yourself and to make the most of moments where you’re really productive and focused.

And also to take the time that you need to rest and recharge. And I also used my emotions as signals rather than avoiding them. And seeing that, okay, I’m feeling overwhelmed now. Maybe that means something. Maybe that means something needs to change rather than saying, I’m just going to push this away. I shouldn’t be overwhelmed right now.

I should just be able to push through because that’s not reality. So overall the benefits that I noticed from my 30 day meditation challenge were more awareness, more listening to myself, less emotional reactivity, and acceptance of my present moment awareness. I actually continued on. I am now on day 25, I think, of meditating every day for 20 minutes.

So I upped it from 15 to 20 minutes and I plan on continuing to increase it and Kind of just see what I notice, see how I feel. And if this is something that you want to try for yourself, I’d suggest just trying the same thing that I did, but you don’t necessarily have to start with 15 minutes, especially if you’ve never meditated before.

I highly suggest starting with a smaller amount of time, whether that is five minutes or 10 minutes, and you can gradually work your way up. It’s less about the duration and really more about the consistency. And so whatever period of time you can start with that will help you to be more consistent, consistent.

That’s what’s going to be best for you. And I want to share this quote that I actually heard in today’s mindfulness. com meditation by Bob Sharples. So here’s the quote. Don’t meditate to fix yourself, to improve yourself, to redeem yourself. Rather, do it as an act of love, of deep, warm friendship to yourself.

In this way, there is no longer any need for the subtle aggression of self improvement, for the endless guilt of not doing enough. It offers the possibility of an end to the ceaseless round of trying so hard that wraps so many people’s lives in a knot. Instead, there is now meditation as an act of love.

How endlessly delightful and encouraging. I love that quote. I think it is so true. So powerful and so true, especially if you’re somebody who tends to get stuck in that incessant cycle of wanting to fix things, of wanting to improve, rather seeing meditation as an act of love, as an act of being there for yourself.

If you’d like to leave your thoughts on this episode, I’d love to hear from you. If you’re listening on Spotify, you can leave me a comment there. If you are watching on YouTube, you can leave me a comment there, and you can also submit a voice message to the podcast with any thoughts, questions, or suggestions you have.

I’m going to be releasing the 200th episode soon. Actually, I think in the beginning of July, and I’m planning on doing a Listener questions answered comments, things like that. So really sharing more from you and my responses to you. So you can share that with me at calmlycoping.com/message. If you’re interested in downloading the mindfulness.com app, you can check out my link in the description. And while you wait for next week’s episode, I have other episodes about calming your mind, increasing work life balance, and feeling more confident from within. So you can check out these episodes here. Thank you so much for tuning in today.

Until next time, be calm.

Until next time…

Be Calm,


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Hey, I'm Tati!

I believe that everybody deserves to live a calm, fulfilling life. My hope is to inspire high achievers to stop fear from running their lives and start putting their needs first.

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