I know really haven't been a very good blogger lately. I've stayed away too long. I've let you down.
Will you ever forgive me?
You will? Whew! Thanks!! (And if you can find the three Followers I lost in the last week, tell them to come back too. Or maybe you can find me three new ones. Free beer.)
Meditation Mondays" posts. Ask and ye shall receive. I'm a givah.
Personally I think of meditation as exercise. Mental exercise. Spiritual exercise. It's just internal vs. external. And usually no sweating which is a real bonus for me personally.
You can certainly spend a full focused hour chanting and breathing with great karmic drama. Alternatively, you can meditate in small subtle bits throughout the day; no one around you will even know you are doing it.
Kegels for the mind.
In the scheme of the Great Juggling Act (family, friends, work, home, community, school, etc), I find that these micro-meditations are super helpful for keeping the balance. Depending on the person, "balance" might mean not taking a hostage and/or not running down the street in your birthday suit screaming like a banshee on fire. Hey - we all have our moments.
The important distinction I never get tired of reiterating is that true "life balance" is internal. It's not possible to keep those balls in the air in perfect harmony at all times. Sh*t happens. Therefore, the real challenge is keeping our mental/physical/spiritual foundation strong enough to handle whatever crap comes our way.
Meditation is a good start.
I've shared this first one before but it's really easy and perfect for those "Calgon take me away!" episodes.
It's called SQUARE BREATHING. You'll find me "square breathing" in the car, at airports and at work a lot. (I also have my kids do this before big tests or competitions and they really love it.) Pretty much anytime you are feeling generally overwhelmed, anxious or whatever.
It will feel more effective if you read at half-speed. Nice and slowly now...
Breathe in for four slow counts (1...2….3….4).
Hold the breath for four slow counts (1...2….3….4).
Breathe out for four slow counts (1...2….3….4).
Hold for four slow counts (1...2….3….4).
Do this a few times until you start to feel more relaxed. Once you get used to it, and assuming you're not driving, close your eyes. Rinse. Repeat.
If you can’t stop yourself from breathing fast or counting too quickly, count to eight. Hyperventilating is not recommended. No blue people.
It also helps me to repeat a personal mantra once I'm starting to feel more calm and centered. Here are some of my favorites depending on the situation. You probably have some of your own, but the idea is pick something simple and helpful for that moment and keep repeating it until you really feel and believe the meaning.
"This is not life or death."
"I am filled gratitude; I have so much to be thankful for...(and list)"
"I am welcoming health, happiness and prosperity into my life now."
"My life is filled with love and light."
"All the answers I need are coming to me easily and effortlessly."
"This too shall pass."
I'm also a big fan of the mantra, "Only four more hours until I can have a glass of wine." It's not very zen, but whatever works. This is a no judgement zone.
My plan is to do more "Meditation Mondays" and post more often in general. Thanks again for your great patience, support and positivity!