I didn’t meditate this weekend, and I could feel the difference. I felt a subtle lift in anxiousness that caused my mind to shuttle back and forth in ways that made me a little unstable. My thoughts and feelings were a tiny bit harder to manage which can mean a big difference when small things go wrong throughout the day. After 2 days of resuming my meditation practice, I’m more grounded and my mind has stopped jumping from subject to subject like an out of control slide projector.
So, in my usual manner, I think I’ll experiment with 30 days of meditation. My goal is to meditate at least 3 times per day and hopefully to do it 5 times. We’ll see what happens.
This would be the schedule I want to take:
First meditation: Focus on my breath in bed between the first alarm sound and the snooze alarm. (I think that’s about 10 minutes)
Second meditation: Do the Daily Calm (from the Calm App) – 10 minutes with a focus and mini-lesson
Third meditation: At lunch take 5-10 minutes to focus on my breath.
Fourth meditation: 10-15 minutes when I get home
Fifth meditation: 10-15 minutes (or longer) an hour or more before bed
Today’s focus for the Daily Calm was negativity. My guide says that we are naturally adept at obsessing on the worst that will happen because our ancestors needed to do that to stay safe. She reminded me that when I obsess over not being perfect, not being loved, growing old alone or losing my job and becoming destitute, I need to question that thought to see if it’s really valid.
She also said it’s best not to fight negative thoughts. When they cross my mind, I should acknowledge them and just register the feelings they cause. I can name each one “negative thought”. I’ve found through this practice already that naming them seems to take their power away. If I feel fear, and I say to myself without judging “fear”, the fear seems to disappear like a dream upon waking. It’s really weird.
Negative thinking – and fighting negative thoughts – causes stress. My emotions are usually a reaction to my thoughts. So, if I choose not to react – negatively or positively – to my own negativity, I can evaluate later – or not – whether I should waste my time stressing about it.
I remember a yoga teacher saying “The mind that told you to go ahead and eat that piece of apple pie is the same mind that beats you up after you eat it.” Thoughts are really pretty fickle, aren’t they? And they are very often not very kind.
Have a great day!