Wisdom//

These 11 Powerful People Swear by Meditation — Here’s What You Can Learn from Them

Penélope Cruz, Oprah, Gisele Bündchen and more all use this tool for success.

LOIC VENANCE / Contributor / Getty Images / David Livingston / Contributor / Getty Images / John Phillips / Stringer / Getty Images
LOIC VENANCE / Contributor / Getty Images / David Livingston / Contributor / Getty Images / John Phillips / Stringer / Getty Images

Penélope Cruz recently shared what she does to prioritize her health and well-being in Marie Claire, saying, “I’ve always done something — meditation and yoga and therapy. I feel like I constantly need to be emptying the glass.”

Cruz isn’t the only celebrity who swears by meditation as a tool to further her well-being. Research shows that the practice can help you feel less stressed, more focused, and can regulate your emotions more effectively. Stars like Oprah Winfrey, Jennifer Aniston, and more all look to meditation as a way to quiet their minds and de-stress. Here, you’ll find inspiration for you to begin (or further!) your own practice:

Jennifer Aniston prioritizes meditation during her morning routine

Aniston’s morning routine has a fixed meditation moment each day at 8:30 a.m. “There’s usually some sort of meditation at that point. Usually 20 minutes, or 10 if I can’t get the full amount of time in. It’s a set [Transcendental Meditation mantra] that I do every time,” she says.

You can make meditation a part of your mornings, too. It’s refreshing to start the day by taking a few moments of stillness before you jump into checking your social media.

For Oprah, meditation is the ultimate defense against negativity

Winfrey loves this quote from author Eckhart Tolle’s book, Stillness Speaks: “When you lose touch with inner stillness, you lose touch with yourself… When you lose touch with yourself, you lose yourself in the world.”

She says that meditation helps regain that stillness. “It’s a sad and confusing predicament to be lost in the world — I know, because I’ve experienced time and again what that disconnectedness feels like. You start believing what the world has to say about you, whether it’s the world in your head or the world outside. That outside world is constantly trying to convince you you’re not enough. But you don’t have to take the bait. Meditation, in whatever form you choose, helps you resist. What I know for sure, and have had to learn through much trial and error: The voice that truly matters is the silent voice of awareness, consciousness, aliveness,” Winfrey says.

Gisele Bündchen says that meditation helped her panic attacks

The supermodel and best-selling author told Arianna Huffington during the Thrive Global Podcast that meditation “gave me a new life” while battling extreme panic attacks during her early twenties. “Meditation gave me the opportunity to be aware of a new world I didn’t know existed, and gave me the understanding that there was a place that no one could take away — that it was my own personal, sacred space that existed within myself, and all I needed to do was quiet my mind and go inward and connect to that,” she says.

Katy Perry meditates to boost her energy

Perry swears by a 20-minute Transcendental Meditation break, a practice that Russell Brand introduced her to six years ago. ‘It’s a game-changer,’ she insists. ‘I will feel neuro pathways open, a halo of lights. And I’m so much sharper. I just fire up!’”

If 20 minutes feels like a tall order, and you’re a meditation novice, know that it’s also possible to feel energized with a moving meditation, like running in the park, or taking a yoga class.

Miranda Kerr meditates with her son before bedtime

Kerr shares her meditation experience with her son, Flynn. “When he sees me meditating, he’ll come sit by me, just feeling the energy. He won’t stay for the whole 10 or 20 minutes, but he’ll join me for a bit,” she says. “Every night before Flynn goes to bed, we’ll also do a guided meditation that will put him to sleep. I have a few on my phone and he’ll pick the one he wants. He’ll just be like, ‘I want this one!'” Everyone can benefit from meditation, no matter your age.

Kendall Jenner’s mental health improved

Kendall Jenner recently opened up to Allure about how after breaking through her initial skepticism about transcendental meditation and learning about it from a teacher, she began “to see such a difference in” the state of her mental health.   

But while the model admits that she does “still have moments of panic attacks and anxiety,” she describes the changes she’s noticed since beginning this process: “I haven’t had one (panic attack) in at least a year. Knock on wood and I have been pretty good and pretty steady. It’s become such an important thing for me, and I definitely find myself in moments where I’m like, ‘I need to sit down. ‘Cause I’ll go a couple of days or weeks without meditating, and I know that is wrong for me, I know I need to do it,” she told the publication.

Jack Dorsey said silent meditation helped him “reset”

The Twitter CEO tweeted about the powerful practice of Vipassana, or “insight meditation,” stating, “Just finished a 10 day silent meditation. Wow, what a reset! Fortunate & grateful I was able to take the time. Happy New Year! #Vipassana”

Emma Watson deemed the mindfulness meditation app Headspace “genius”

The actress tweeted to her followers asking if they knew about Headspace in 2013, writing, “Its an app that teaches you how to meditate. It’s kind of genius.”  Headspace Co-Founder Andy Puddicombe also elaborated on the power of mindfulness in 2018, telling Thrive Global why meditation is his key to success: “Sure, there are all the usual health benefits that people talk about, but it seems that the qualities of mind that meditation promotes, such as compassion, forgiveness and understanding, is what will ultimately move the needle — both for our own health and happiness, and also that of the world.”

Lupita Nyong’o felt a burst of clarity after a 10-days silent meditation retreat

Dorsey isn’t the only successful figure whose life improved after participating in silent meditation. The actress also noticed that she had more “clarity” after completing a silent retreat, telling Marie Claire, “Usually I listen to music and it’s backdrop, but after that retreat, I was able to focus solely on that and for it to fill my existence in that moment… I heard the musicality. I heard instruments I’d never heard before. It was like clarity. And I was just, like, wow. I imagine that people sometimes get that from drugs. But it was really nice to get that just from spending time with myself.”

Kristen Bell says meditative yoga helps life go more smoothly

“Do meditative yoga for 10 minutes every morning. When you have a problem — whether it’s road rage, your guy, or work — meditation allows everything to unfold the way it’s supposed to,” the actress told SHAPE in 2010. On top of the mental boost, yoga boasts health benefits, such as easing chronic pain.

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

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