My body slowing down has been an entrance for my brain to slow down, and the twice-daily meditation is doing WONDERS for my otherwise-racing mind. I meditate at least once a day for ten minutes, sometimes twice if I remember or make time. I see this time as preventative medicine, much like taking vitamins or exercising. It keeps my brain in shape.
|Me last weekend on my Gettysburg backpacking trip|
I also often spontaneously decide to meditate at various points throughout the day, especially if I notice my mind starting to race or crowd with worries. Wherever I am, I simply:
- Sit up straight and close my eyes
- Take three, deep, cleansing breaths
- Focus on the sensation of breathing, either by feeling the coolness of the breath coming in and out of my nostrils, or noticing the way my belly expands and contracts with each breath.
- As I do this, I notice thoughts coming in to my mind. I don't judge myself for them. I simply think, "Oh, there's that thought," and I picture it sliding off of the movie screen of my mind.
- Sometimes certain aggressive thoughts come back over and over, and I just think, "Oops, there you are again," and let it slide away again, as many times as necessary.
When I meditate, things slow down. When things slow down enough, I can see the spaces between decisions. There is room enough to choose happiness. Happiness is an available choice all the time.