Why Meditate? Don't be an Asshole

I've been meditating for just shy of two years now. When I started, I meditated for 200+ days in a row without missing a single one. (You can read about that experience here.) From there I've settled down into a more normal, less forced rhythm. I meditate every morning to start my day. 

Some days I miss due to travel, oversleeping, or perhaps a lazy weekend, etc. It happens. I'm not aiming for perfection, nor do I recommend it. At about day 225 I found that I was doing it for the obligation and to watch the little counter tick one day more. So I quit for a few weeks. Then I started over with a more relaxed approach. At this point I don't even use an audio guide. I am my own guide. 

It's a small fifteen minute commitment that has a big impact - it makes me less of an asshole.

I have more patience. Which translates to not being an asshole.

I'm more aware of the beauty around me. I'm not the asshole destroying the planet.

I'm more empathetic. I understand that we are all going through our own struggles. Which circles back to the first point - more patience, less of an asshole.

I find myself more and more in the moment, really connecting to the people I meet on a daily basis. I can see more clearly what they need from me. Again less of an asshole.

I use mindfulness to manage pain (headaches, cramps, etc.).

Of course these benefits do not happens overnight. You won't meditate once and feel completely transformed. Nor will I tell you it's easy. The effect is cumulative. Like putting one building block on top of another. 

The opposite is also true. When I miss one day, I start to slide. One skip day leads to a skip week. Which leads back to asshole behavior.

When asked why meditate the answer is simple? Don't be an asshole.