Meditation every day can be tough. Daunting even. Most often, it may seem like work. Work that you just don’t have time for. Work that frustrates more than calms. Work that fits nowhere into the list of priorities you have set for your day. After all, mediation is the art of focus. Focusing 100% of your attention in one specific area. Actively engaging your mind and body in mediation is a process. A process that at first may not come easily.
A few steps to help simplify the task of meditation:
1. Let your breath be your guide. Listen to the sound of your inhale and exhale. Take even breaths. In and out. In and out. In other words, don’t concentrate so hard that you start to hyperventilate. Yes. This has happened to me. I became so fixated on the act of breathing that I needed a brown paper bag and a cold wash cloth. <Pfft. Snort. It’s funny now.>
2. Find your purpose. Spiritual? Connectedness? Relaxation? All of the above? Remember that your purpose in each meditation can and will change. Today, my purpose was to wallow in the depths of a silent room. As time ticked slowly and silently by. Tick. Tick. Tick.
3. Consciously clear your mind of frustration, stress, anxiety, and fear. Repeat after me: It’s okay the baby didn’t sleep through the night. It’s okay that I’m tired. It’s okay that the kids threw trains at each other’s heads (granted no one was seriously hurt). It’s okay. It’s okay. I promise.
4. Adjust your body to a position of renewal. Lotus pose. Tree pose. Child’s pose. Corpse pose. Sleep pose.
5. Be grateful. Practice awareness outside of formal mediation. Find your breath actively during each day. Take in the beauty that surrounds you. The warmth of the winter sun. The purity of your child’s face. The kindness in your best friend’s actions. The umpteenth time you’ve stepped on a freakin’ Lego. Breathe. Be grateful. The pain in your foot will subside, that is – until next time. <oooommmmmmm.>
May I find joy in the chaos and love in the storm. May I find the strength to pursue my passions in this life. May peace overflow from my heart and may the beauty within guide me to do good for myself and others, always.
Do you have a daily mantra or prayer you say often?
Live in the moment. We hear this saying all the time in some form or another. Whether it be in a yoga class, philosophy book, or from the older lady at Target who is keen on observing our primo mommying adventures. But what does it really mean to us as mothers? Frankly, I find it extremely hard to “be” in the moment as a mom. I am constantly on the go, go, go. With housework and work work and play dates and nap time and bedtime and lunch time and freak-out time (the kids, not me—OK, me too!), there never seems like enough time in the day to actually exist in the moment. As a mother to small children, I feel like I am constantly battling. I’m battling laundry and dishes and dirty floors and messy bedrooms and scraped knees and melt-downs. All the while leaving me exhausted and short-tempered, craving a piece of chocolate cake and a shower.
To revel in a clear mind and a calm body, it feels foreign to most. And it shouldn’t. Maybe the definition of living in the moment has everything to do with the jumbled and discombobulated life I do live and nothing to do with the life I perceive it to represent. Not yearning for the past when I was flying solo or a future that holds the next best thing to make my life easier. The clean house that I strive for or the live-in nanny that I will never have, but dream about often. Maybe if I stopped fighting the daily chores and the sleepless nights, my mind would awaken to the revelation that, YES! this is my moment. Every day with my children and my husband. The good, the bad, the pee all over the bathroom, they all lead me to me.