“In 30 minutes, Ollie helped me gain more insight into my meditation practice than I would’ve achieved in months on my own. His caring, inquisitive, open-ended questions have already led to fundamental shifts in my approach to meditation and my understanding of my own emotional landscape. I can’t recommend him highly enough.“
– Jeremy, 35, United States
Meditative dialogue is meditation coaching in real-time. This can be a radically faster and more effective method of meditation teaching than traditional models.
The process looks something like this:
- We identify something that you’d like to work with in meditation – for instance maybe you’d like to ‘settle’ faster after you sit down, or there’s some persistent hindrance that won’t shift. (This doesn’t need to be perfectly clear – you might just be confused, or something doesn’t ‘feel right’.)
- On a call with me, you meditate. I can lead the practice to whatever degree we agree would be helpful, and you describe what’s happening for you; whatever you’d like to share or would like guidance with, at whatever pace your experience unfolds.
- I ask questions, provide suggestions for how to work with obstacles as they arise, and how to deepen and strengthen positive states of mind that develop. Together we can identify what’s holding you back, where your strengths are, and what works for you to develop your practice most effectively.
This is a very spacious and slow process that gives you lots of time to try out suggestions, ask questions or clarifications, and explore your experience.
Why Meditative Dialogue?
There are three strong advantages to meditative dialogue: 1. Holding Space, 2. Motivation, and 3. Clear and Immediate Feedback.
- Holding Space
I was astonished to discover, after trying a particular introspective technique for a while by myself, that doing the exact same thing with somebody else present to listen and hold space, was literally about 50 times more effective. There was a sense of warm spacious openness, which made everything feel vastly easier. Sometimes it can be indescribably helpful to have somebody to hold a compassionate space for the difficulties, internal conflicts, doubts, and sticky emotions that inevitably arise during internal work.
When you’re meditating with somebody present, it’s much harder to get distracted or decide to end early! Something about being present with another human and practising together tends to bring out the best of your potential, and makes it easier to tap into in the future.
3. Clear and Immediate Feedback
Let’s say you’re learning how to play the piano. You have no formal training, and you begin trying to play a challenging piece of music by ear; trying to figure out which notes are which. You often make mistakes, and you’re not quite sure if you’re getting the technique right. Your only option is to just keep trying.
This is not a very effective way of learning.
Much better is when you have instructions and sheet music to follow, but this is still a difficult job. If you think you’re making a mistake, you have to reread the manual all over again to identify it.
Better still is having a coach – but imagine if you met with a piano coach once every few weeks without actually having a piano present. You try to summarise exactly what you’ve been doing verbally, the coach tries to give you feedback verbally, and you have to try to remember the whole conversation the next time you’re at the piano. The standard model of meditation teaching is a little like this; the feedback loops take place over weeks and months rather than seconds and minutes.
Now imagine that you have a piano teacher sitting beside you at the piano. You can get detailed guidance, and specific feedback whenever you make a mistake, helping you to recognise the issue and correct it immediately.
You’re putting in the same amount of time and effort to learn piano, but the real-time feedback accelerates your progress rapidly and helps you avoid ingraining bad habits; your learning is faster, easier, and less uncertain.
Try it out!
Book a 30 minute meditative dialogue session here
Questions? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
“Ollie is a beautiful human. He is sensitive, caring and intelligent. He has supported me immensely, and time and time again when we meet, I’m grateful for his beautiful open and accepting presence. If you wish to work with Ollie, you have my word of his genuineness.”
– Dan, Israel
I teach on a donation basis. Suggested donation rates for a 30 minute session are below, but if you are able to donate only a very small amount (or nothing at all) that’s no problem.
Supporter’s rate: £40 ($50)
Standard rate: £30 ($40)
Concession rate: £20 ($25)