If You Don't Have the Time to Read This...
In a world that places value on what we do, it’s very difficult to decide to just not do. Sitting quietly isn’t valued. Taking time off isn’t valued. Resting isn’t valued. But, all these actions are very important.
Our bodies require rest. We need sleep to function properly, and to keep our immune system strong. We know this, so we usually force ourselves to get at least six hours of sleep. Our minds, however, don’t get the break that they deserve.
We are always thinking, processing, ruminating. Our mind’s off switch is in easy reach, but we never take the steps to flip it.
The off switch is meditation. By taking 20 minutes to meditate, just once or twice a day, our minds would get a little break. Meditating is the fastest way to finding peace. And yet, it seems to be the most difficult thing for people to approach.
Why? People say that the reason is because they don’t see immediate results… but they don’t always see immediate results at the gym, either. So it’s got to be more than that. It’s my guess that so many of us are running from our past, or the debt that’s chasing us (all that spending, all those bills). We are running from bad relationships that we don’t want to admit aren’t working, we are running from the person that we know we are inside but fear people will think is weird or will reject. So when we come to sit for meditation, so much comes up that we just quit.
We don’t want to face who we really are inside, nor do we want to face the problems we have in life. Because of that, we can’t handle the silence. Instead of making the choice to just look inside and deal with what’s going on, we run from it. We turn to social media, gossip, or even just the television, to escape our lives.
We run by overspending, shopping for things we don’t need just to fill a void. We run by overeating, or by not eating enough. We self-medicate with alcohol, drugs, pills. We fight aging with Botox or plastic surgery to help us look younger. We get into friendships that are loaded with drama, because the drama keeps our minds busy. Drama and gossip are toxic, and those who engage in those behaviors are running hard from something big. All that frenzied behavior isn’t helpful. It puts us into debt, makes us unhealthy, and creates unnecessary stress.
Detaching from that behavior takes work. It’s breaking some big habits. Once you cross the bridge from dramatic behavior to gentle, responsible behavior, you will feel free. Beginning a meditation practice will also help you shift your focus from external validation to internal. Meditations works, and it does take time to see results, but you have the time. Life is long.
I teach a class called Mind Body Melt. It incorporates movement, breathing, and a short 5 - 7 minute silent meditation. I have found that when people take the class, they leave floating. They find their breath, they move their bodies, and then the sit quietly and allow the monkey mind to do it’s thing, without judgment.
Hopefully, they will be inspired to take this practice home with them and continue it between classes. Anyone can meditate. You can. You don’t need a dollar to do it; nothing is needed. Nothing but the will to want to change. Give it a try.
Recommended reading: Bliss More by Light Watkins