You're in need of a good RESET
You’re ready to unlock new levels of insight and creativity
You’re ready to harness your mind as an ally for creative expression
You have a hard time focusing or quieting your mind
You're ready to let go of past traumas & harness a deep sense of peace
You’re constantly stressed and easily triggered
You’re suffering from anxiety, depression, addiction, chronic pain or substance abuse
You’re inspired to foster deeper connections with friends and family
An important question, but not one we choose to frequently ask ourselves.
Why? Because it opens the conversation up to two larger questions: Who are we at our core and what makes us happy?
If the last year has taught us anything about the way we live our lives, it’s that it can be so easy to fall into mundane patterns, making it harder for us to figure out what these questions mean to us.
“Wake up, do work, eat lunch, do more work, eat dinner, sleep, repeat.”
At first glance, that’s not a completely terrible life.
- At least you have a job
- At least you have a roof over your head
- At least you have food in your stomach
Realistically, things could be so much worse— and yet, that’s the problem with mundanity, it’s just neutral.
Neutral is neither good, nor bad.
Neutral is the middle ground.
Neutral is accepting familiarity in exchange for certainty.
Well, that’s an incredibly safe place to be, but eventually “neutral” turns to “numb”—and while this dulls any pain you’d feel, it also dulls joy.
A life of neutrality is a life without risk, danger, pain...but it’s also a life without vibrance.
But that’s not what you want, is it?
The best parts of life come from experiences: the highs, the lows, and everything in between.
So instead of falling into these cycles of dullness in life,
how do we open ourselves to the possibility of these experiences?
How do we go about finding who we are and the things that make us happy?
For some, it has to do with our need to do more in life. To get more from life. To become the best at something. To achieve.
For others, it’s about the relationships we build with friends, family, and loved ones—It’s the connections that drive us.
Well, what if I told you that you could find all of that within yourself, if you just took the time to look?
Most people are too distracted to dig deep and find the answers within, but...
Now I’m sure at this point in life you’ve heard plenty about meditation, it’s all over the mainstream.
It’s been popularized, branded, and rebranded over and over again.
And while it’s such an important practice, it’s almost never getting used in the right way.
I say that because I hear this all the time:
-“If I just had more time to meditate, I would”
-“I always lose focus and end up wasting time”
-“I can’t quiet the thoughts in my head, it’s not working”
-“I’m just not built for meditation.”
It may feel like that sometimes but in reality we’re all built for meditation, you just haven’t been given the right tools to make it work the way it’s supposed to.
And okay, I’ll admit, early on it may feel like a struggle...
...and that’s kind of the point.
If it were really that quick to master, everyone would be doing it and I wouldn’t be known as “MeditationDave” on Instagram, I’d just be Dave...regular old Dave... (but less about me, let’s talk about you).
While it would be some work, the benefits of learning meditation the right way would be life altering.
But what does that actually mean, “the right way”?
The act of meditation itself is the sharpening of the mind: the ability to direct your focus and keep it there.
We’ll dive a little deeper into the “how” later, but all in all, the meditation you’ve been experiencing is the equivalent to surface level conversation—it may be pleasant and calming but you’re not getting the full benefits of a deep connection with yourself.
So when I say that you’re able to get the most out of life, to achieve, to connect deeper with others, it really stems from connecting more deeply with yourself.
And if I told you when meditation is introduced the right way to you, all of that is possible and more, would you believe me?
While it might not seem that easy, that’s the absolute truth.
And along with that truth comes another about our minds:
Let’s do a little exercise:
If you were to close your eyes, and I asked you what was the first thing that came to mind when I say the word “meditation”, what would you see?
It’s pretty likely that the first image in your head was of a Buddhist monk draped in bright orange robes, sitting still for hours at the base of a tree just outside of a monastery.
Maybe you see what we’d all call the “stereotypical hippie” with long knotted hair, beaded necklaces, and sandals.
Whatever it is you saw, it’s likely that it was some mystified ideal handed down to you as a history lesson that makes meditation seem like this “woo woo” practice of people sitting in silence looking for something that can’t be seen.
Now, while meditation has been used as a spiritual practice in religions and cultures, it’s also a very practical and scientific practice that we can use to get benefit OUTSIDE of the spiritual unknowns.
The bottom line is that you don’t have to believe in gods, you don’t have to join a religion or be in search of some “spiritual awakening”, you just have to want something so badly, you’re willing to practice focusing on it so you can go out there and get it.
The next time you think about someone meditating, I don’t want you to see a monk, I don’t want you to see a yogi, I don’t even want you to see a CEO or entrepreneur (which I promise you, are people who are definitely practicing meditation—millionaires notoriously use meditation to operate at peak performance).
But when you think of meditation, I want you to see Kobe Bryant sitting by himself on the court at 5AM, hours before anyone else is supposed to be there.
That was his time to practice his shot, to get his mind right, to get himself in the right headspace.
And if anyone is a good example of success with meditation, Kobe would be a great option to think of. While he may not have sat in the middle of the court crossing his legs and chanting “Om”, when he was out there with nothing to focus on other than himself, he WAS meditating.
Speaking of “Headspace”, that brings me to problem #2 about the current perception of meditation:
We’ve seen the hype of apps like “Headspace” and “Calm” make their mark on the mainstream and don’t get me wrong, these are useful tools in their own right and deserve to be applauded.
Like any habit, meditation takes time to build up that sharpened awareness and control over your attention, but to get someone to go from zero to 100% is a recipe for disaster.
So what do these apps do instead? They preach the consistency of the practice through push notifications and give you a simple launching point which is beautiful because they’re making meditation feel more attainable and comfortable.
THAT is what YogiLab was created for: to normalize meditation for the general public, make exercising the mind a widely used skillset, and turning that practice into a more enriching experience beyond “mindfulness”.
The version of meditation that we see right now in western culture is the entry point to Vipassana meditation which starts with the awareness of the breath.
But that’s where it seems to end…
...in order to actually exercise the mind, you have to treat it like a muscle—you don’t grow without pushing your boundaries and stretching it.
Unfortunately, even though so many people are getting consistent practice, with only 20-30 minutes of that practice they aren’t testing their limits.
The mind muscle isn’t growing and they stay at the surface of awareness—barely breaking the surface.
Essentially, these people end up stuck on the first step of a 10 step ladder that has the ability to bring them so much happiness even though it’s just out of reach.
The benefits of practicing meditation encompass the physical, mental, and emotional.
People in their early stages of learning are often brought to the awareness that they may experience better sleep, lower levels of stress, and reduced negative emotions.
And even though these are great benefits, you can also experience a serious boost in your imagination, creativity, an increased sense of self awareness, and of course a stronger control of your focus so you can direct it in any which way you see fit.
Wouldn’t life be that much less mundane this way?
If you managed to sharpen your focus and use that alongside this new found self awareness, wouldn’t you be so much happier with your life?
What would it look like if you had that level of control over yourself? What would it look like if you were able to manage your stress, get better sleep, spend more time in positive emotions, would that be worth 1 day of your life?
That's why YogiLab has transformed this course to resemble the style of practice used by Burmese monks, and popularized by the late, great teachers Sayagyi U Ba Khin and S.N. Goenka.
It's just like a juice cleanse that detoxifies the body. Meditation detoxifies the mind. If you could start seeing progress after just 1 day, would it be worth that for you?
Everyone is capable of change and creating a new future. But what is true is that pattern is prologue.
So while this meditation course would be having you practice for multiple hours a day, it's all about creating that pattern so if you wanted to be in the practice for 6,7, 8 hours a day, you could.
Now, I know that not everyone will get 6+ hours a day. As much as I’d love to see that be the standard of meditation in the world, it’s not realistic for everyone in their day-to-day life.
People have jobs to get to, lives to live, loved ones to care for: so if your life is already hectic to begin with, “finding the extra time” to meditate at these levels is hard to say the least.
While there are studies that show those who meditate with more frequency and duration can operate on less sleep, it takes time to adjust along with present scheduling.
But that’s the beauty of the 1 Day Meditation Challenge:
But it can be just as powerful when the practice is compounded into a shorter period of time.
And you don’t have to go on a meditation retreat for 10 days to live like the monks, you can do it all from the comfort of your own home.
Because if you have a concentrated period where you can meditate for 4,5, 6+ hours a day and you’re dedicated to mastering the mind, every time you meditate after would be that much more powerful.
Just think about learning a new instrument: if you were to spend 2 weeks learning absolutely everything you could about the guitar for hours each day, how effective would you be every other time you decided to play?
You wouldn’t get to mastery in those 2 weeks, but you’d see significant progress and once you realized how far your potential could actually reach, you’d likely get addicted to the growth—spending more time building towards mastery.
This applies to just about anything in life whether it’s riding a bike, learning a new language, even going to a university to study.
The point I’m trying to make is simple: creating a base level understanding and expertise in meditation will make all your future experience with it that much more meaningful.
When you take that time to dive deep and really surrender to the practice, you’re able to tap into levels of focus that will allow you to do things you’ve only dreamt of.
And if you’re able to remove these preconceived ideas about meditation, you uncover what it really is at its core:
Like I’ve said before, you don’t have to believe in “the mystical” in order to gain near Superpower-like benefits from meditation.
With meditation comes :
A drastic increase in concentration, attention, and mental clarity
The decrease of blood pressure, inflammation response, and overall stress
An increase in overall physical health and mental well being
At first it just looks like another “healthy living” tool, (mindfulness*) but just imagine what you could do with this kind of power at your fingertips. Remember a time when you were fully healthy, and how much better and more capable you felt.
My personal introduction to meditation couldn’t have been any more practical or logical because I saw what was possible—and believe it or not, I’m currently living it.
The pain of watching my mother simultaneously work 4 jobs and put herself through university after escaping from the grasps of a cult.
The pain of having to bear witness to friends and loved ones struggle with suicide and abuse of all kinds.
The pain of twisting my spine at the age of 14
Some would say I had every reason to live the rest of my life jaded and defeated.
Forget having to deal with the physical pain of a twisted back for years but add on the emotional traumas of living life on the poverty line in London along with watching people you love suffer so badly they’re willing to end it all.
It’s entirely possible that my life could’ve gone down that path, but I strongly believe that determination along with the power of meditation showed me a better way.
Since my injury, I’d been searching for answers wherever I could. Meditation ended up being a route for me to manage the pain I was experiencing.
Yes, my life was trending upward, I had a caring group of friends, my family was in better standings, I was on the road to getting my Ph.D in Comparative Literature but even with all of that, I was still carrying the pain and suffering that was with me for so many years.
At the age of 23, I’d already been practicing a variety of meditation techniques for about 9 years and up until that point, I realized that I wasn’t releasing any of the pain that was in my body—I was simply masking it with these techniques.
Looking to find ways to do more than just manage the burden I was carrying with me for so long, I found myself on a Vipassana meditation retreat where something fundamentally changed my relationship with pain.
About 3 days in, the pain and numbness of sitting for 10 to 12 hours per day was starting to settle in. Most people fight this with a collection of pillows formed to create a makeshift throw but it wasn’t until I started focusing on that pain and stepping towards it rather than trying to escape it that I made my discovery:
It occured to me that it was better for me to try this technique for everything it was worth and see if it actually did work: so I thought, “let me move towards the pain instead of trying to avoid it.”
As I’m doing this, I had a deep pain in my knee from sitting cross legged and I’d decided to focus all of my attention with the technique on that. Lo and behold, I started using the technique correctly.
I felt this pain resonating outwards from a point in my knee and as I got deeper into the details, the smaller and sharper my awareness got, the more I realized: there wasn't just pain.
There was pain, then space.
Then pain and space.
And soon, there was more space than pain.
I got so deep into this awareness of what was happening, the pent up tension in my knee exploded and was released throughout my body—I was finally able to let go.
At that point in my life, Vipassana had taught me that all of my external turmoil, all of the things physically happening to me and in the outside world were just a reflection of what was going on internally. Because when I left the meditation center, it wasn't just the pain in my knee that had dissolved, my entire life had begun to transform.
And of course I knew this on a logical level, but it wasn’t until I felt it for myself that I actually understood how it worked.
You see, I’ve never been attracted to fluffy belief systems, those seem to use their practices to escape reality.
The truly hardcore spiritual practitioners leverage meditation to embrace and affect their reality, not run away from it.
They look inward to heal what’s going on internally and end up creating a new world externally.
Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha was a Thai billionaire, (yes, billionaire) who had bought the English Football Club, Leicester City.
If you’re a fan of English football, you’d know that Leicester City were not one of the top clubs in the British Premier League—in fact, they're almost always on the bottom.
Leicester City were more likely to get relegated again in 2014 and get sent down to a lower league than to win The Premier League and the odds of Leicester City actually winning at the beginning of that year were 5000 to 1
But Vichai wasn’t just a billionaire, he was also a dedicated meditator. Set on bringing glory to the club, he wanted to draw more meditators towards Leicester City in hopes to bring .
The team participated, the staff as well, he even would fly over Buddhist monks to sit in the stadiums while the team was playing to be able to bless the games.
And then something ridiculous started happening—they actually started beating all of the top teams.
At the time, Manchester City was one of the most expensive teams in the world and were nearly guaranteed to win that year, but lo and behold, Leicester City won the Premier League.
You could say that there are a million different factors involved when it comes to winning like that but I think we all know that after reading this:
By now, you’re probably wondering what are the next steps you’d need to take in order to start developing these almost super power-like qualities when it comes to meditation.
With travel becoming more difficult to navigate, a lot of these meditation retreat centers are closing shop or may have some strong restrictions on who can attend.
It’s always been the goal for myself and YogiLab to make meditation accessible to everyone and the current global climate made it all the more important to put together an online retreat.
For so long the practice had been confined to monasteries or the hyper elite and believe it or not, there were a few times in history where we almost lost Vipassana meditation as a whole—I’m here to make sure we never make it to that point ever again.
That’s exactly why YogiLab has turned this 1 Day retreat into a course that anyone with an internet connection can take advantage of, for free.
Some might think there’s a catch but to be completely transparent with you, I’ve made my money. I’ve lived a lifestyle I never thought possible when growing up poverty stricken in London, fulfilled a lifelong goal of buying my mother her dream home, and I’ve watched others do much of the same for themselves.
I owe that to meditation and that’s why YogiLab puts together courses like this for everyone around the world with an internet connection to access.
And listen, I’m completely aware that not everyone wants to be an entrepreneur or a millionaire, which is fine, because meditation isn’t just for “the elite”—it can be a powerful tool for anyone at any income bracket at any stage of their life.
You might also be wondering at this point what this 1 day “at home retreat” entails, so I’ve decided to give you a brief overview of what’s inside.
On this day, you’re going to learn the skill of “mastering the mind” and enhancing your focus further. If you can tell the mind to stay somewhere, you're in control of it. You’ll be increasing sensitivity and building awareness that’s near microscopic.
This is actually the skill that The Buddha used to get to enlightenment—going so deep into awareness to the point where you can perceive the fibers of reality. This’ll show you how powerfully focused your mind can get.
We’ll start off slow with the first understanding of meditation, feeling the breath coming in and out the nostrils. We want you to really connect with this and understand that the mind is a muscle.
With this you’ll develop the willpower, the focus, the clarity, and the sensitivity to begin working with yourself.
Control over your focus and attention so you’re making the moves YOU want to make
A deep understanding that extends beyond “objective love” so you can experience a deeper connection with yourself and your loved ones.
A way you can bring this tool into your real life so you can experience mental calmness and clarity even when you’re still interacting with others
Well it is possible for you and I’m here to offer you an opportunity to completely change your life, if you so choose.
Whether you’re bought in on spending 12 hours meditating for an entire day, or you’re simply interested in using the course to keep yourself regularly practicing, This form of meditation has been transforming millions of lives for 2,600 years.
I think it’s fair to say it’s proven to be one of the most transformative forms of meditation that the world has ever seen.
In fact, I often wonder what life would be like for us if we were introduced to meditation in the same way we were introduced to language or mathematics—how many tears would be saved? How much unnecessary self-inflicted pain could be avoided?
Well, we can’t go back in time and teach you how to use Vipassana when you were in kindergarten, but what we can do is take you on an immersive 1 day journey that will most definitely change the course of your life in any direction you see fit.
Then maybe the next generation will learn meditation from their parents in the same way they learn language. Maybe that will stop our children from dropping bombs on each other...
I’d like to think of this moment right here as the famous “Blue Pill/Red Pill” scene in The Matrix.
“After this there is no turning back. You take the blue pill, the story ends; you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe.”
“You take the red pill, you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.”
The blue pill is you taking all this information and going back to your life without taking the 1-day course.
The mundane will certainly never become mystical, you won’t find out how far down the rabbit hole goes, and that may be just fine with you—but be aware that life may not progress any further than this.
The red pill on the other hand, isn’t your way out. It’s your way in.
It’s your way into a world where you’re in control of yourself, every little fiber of your being.
Access to the power within yourself that 99% of the world is simply “too busy” to discover and harness.
So, which will it be: The blue pill? Or the red pill?
Work through your complexes
Unlock your creativity
Powerful stress management
Reduce anxiety and depression
Sleep better than you have in years
Experience true happiness, peace, and contentment
Gain greater clarity, focus, and presence
Have more energy throughout the day
Dissolve negative beliefs and thought patterns
Understand (and overcome) addictive patterning
Actually, the ten-day course is the minimum; it provides an essential introduction and foundation to the technique. To develop in the practice is a lifetime job. Experience over generations has shown that if Vipassana is taught in periods of less than ten days, the student does not get a sufficient experiential grasp of the technique.
Traditionally, Vipassana was taught in retreats lasting seven weeks. With the dawning of the twentieth century, the teachers of this tradition began to experiment with shorter times to suit the quickening pace of life. They tried thirty days, two weeks, ten days, down to seven days, and they found that less than ten days is not enough time for the mind to settle down and work deeply with the mind-body phenomenon.
The course is entirely free. Any student that completes the course is given an opportunity to make a donation to help Yogilab to continue to run these courses and teach more students the life changing art of Vipassana meditation.
If you don't include any of the optional meditation or discourse segments of the course, then you will meditate for approximately 12.5 hours/day (to all you hardcore meditators, there's space to do more meditation outside of the schedule). If your application is approved you will receive a complete retreat schedule with all the details.
Currently the online retreats are taught in English. The YogiLab team is in the process of prepping courses in other languages. If you're interested in taking part in a course in another language please contact us let us know your preference.🚀
Nothing. Meditation Dave will be teaching this course purely for the love of teaching.
Certainly. Feel free to meditate on a chair, sofa, or with another support that works for you. Though we do recommend for students to sit without a back support, if possible, as it enhances the effectiveness of the technique.
The diet that we recommend [as detailed in the food document you will receive upon being accepted] is designed for its simplicity for the detoxification of your digestive system. If the diet that we recommend is unavailable or impossible for you, then we recommend you follow another vegan diet that's easy for you to manage across the full 10 days.
Pregnant women can sit this retreat. We ask pregnant women to ensure they are confident that their pregnancy is stable before applying. As with all medical conditions, we would advise seeking medical advice if you are unsure of the health and safety of this practice for you and your baby.
In the interest of all students being able to learn this technique as thoroughly as possible in the given time, we ask that you maintain complete silence as this helps to starve the mind of external stimulus, which can interfere with the process of internal exploration and meditation.
Silence is not an essential part of this technique, but it does help to vastly accelerate the rate at which you will learn and experience the benefits of Vipassana.
For a person in reasonable physical and mental health who is genuinely interested and willing to make a sincere effort, meditation (including "noble silence") is not difficult. If you are able to follow the instructions patiently and diligently, you can be sure of tangible results.
All that Vipassana really is, is training for how to use the mind correctly and effectively. We are all continuously using our minds all day. This technique simply gives you a structured framework for how to be more effective at optimizing the use of your mind. Everyone starts somewhere.
Obviously someone who is physically too weak to follow the schedule will not be able to benefit from this course. The same is true of someone suffering from psychiatric problems. Through a process of questions and answers, we will be able to help you decide clearly beforehand whether you are in a position to benefit fully from a course. In some cases applicants are asked to get approval from their doctor before they can be accepted.
Many diseases are caused by our inner agitation. If the agitation is removed, the disease may be alleviated or disappear. But learning Vipassana with the aim of curing a disease is a mistake that never works. People who try to do this waste their time because they are focusing on the wrong goal. They may even harm themselves. They will neither understand the meditation properly nor succeed in getting rid of the disease.
No. Vipassana teaches you to be aware and equanimous, that is, balanced, despite all the ups and downs of life. But if someone comes to a course concealing serious emotional problems, that person may be unable to understand the technique or to apply it properly to achieve the desired results.
People from many religions and no religion have found the meditation course helpful and beneficial. Vipassana is an art of living, a way of life. While it is the essence of what the Buddha taught, it is not a religion; rather, it is the cultivation of human potential leading to a life which is good for oneself and good for others.
Vipassana is taught step by step, with a new step added each day to the end of the course. If you stop early, you do not learn the full teaching and do not give the technique a chance to work for you. Also, by meditating intensively, a course participant initiates a process that reaches fulfilment with the completion of the course. Interrupting the process before completion is not advisable.
Stopping early is simply short changing yourself. You don't give yourself a chance to learn the full technique and you might not be able to apply it successfully in daily life. You also interrupt the process in the middle rather than letting it come to the proper conclusion. To stop a day or two early, you waste all the time you have invested.
We advise turning off the WiFi in all areas of your house except the area where you will be watching the discourses and meditations. Likewise, we advise putting away all electronic and mobile devices that may prove a distraction to you whilst meditating.
If you are on the Spiritual Hustler or Workplace Warrior schedule then our suggestion is to minimize the use of internet and all other technologies as much as you are able, to ensure minimal distraction from your meditative experience.
We start retreats every month at 5:00pm on the 11th. If you are living in a different time zone then each day will be available for you to start and watch, first thing in the morning in your region.
Yes, if your application is approved, then you will be sent all the supporting documents necessary for you to complete the course successfully.
Yes, once you are accepted onto a YogiLab online retreat you will be invited to join our Vipassana Meditation Community group on Facebook. This will allow you to connect with other meditators in your area and worldwide, as well as ask questions about the technique.
The potential benefits that can be received from mastering your mind are infinite and unimaginable. Using our Founder, and your meditation teacher, David Hans-Barker as an example, Vipassana meditation has helped him to alleviate chronic pain, overcome stress and anxiety, access deep states of bliss and meditation, and go from living in poverty to founding multiple businesses and achieving financial freedom. These are just a small sample of the benefits that can be achieved using this technique.
Yes, you can complete with a partner or a friend. However, physical contact, sexual activity or communication (verbal or nonverbal) is not permitted during the course.
As long as they or you do not make any attempts to communicate or instigate physical contact during the course, then this shouldn't be a problem. All you need is a space where you can practice for the entirety of the 10 day period.