It has been a couple of months since I wrote my last blog and it is a good indication of how life has sped up considerably and time has evaporated and so many things just didn’t get done!  As the last couple of months’ Google calendar reminders have called upon me to write my blog I felt that familiar sensation of anxiety and stress, and then allowed them to get pushed to the bottom of the pile of things to do (or not do)! 

I opened “OM laguna beach” in January of this year and each month have gotten successively (and gratefully) busier.  It was Thanksgiving weekend a year ago that I found my little studio with a “for lease” sign in the window and knew immediately it was “the right place” for me.  I dreamed of having a place where people could come to learn to meditate or rekindle their practice and where I could teach and coach people in a warm inviting and healing space. And here I am 12 months later, doing the work, planning and growing the business, starting a radio show, mothering 2 teenage boys, trying not to ignore the dogs, all with a sense of pressure, stress and more aware of the losses of time as opposed to the gains.

 

Well today, that familiar calendar bell rang and I realized somewhat embarrassingly that I had fallen prey to the very thing I teach an antidote for; and that is cumulative stress and a sense of being overwhelmed by the race against time.  I am grateful for it all though as it reminded me of something very important that I forgot, TO SIT, TO BREATHE, TO MEDITATE!

 

Now as I sit here writing my blog on the first day of the last month of 2013 after reconnecting to that antidote I know so well that lies in the simple practice of sitting and breathing (aka meditation). I am once again happily reminded that I have something to lean on, a real gift of time and peace that exists at the very core of who I am, that it is with me even in the race and state of overwhelm. 

This is the double-edged sword of ‘awareness’ that we develop with meditation.  We remember something we forgot and then we forget again, and the cycle goes on!  The gift in remembering is to follow the steady cadence of BREATH and allow it to slow everything down into present time reality and feel the pressures of future planning and past incompletions fall into their proper places.  The difficulty is that we do forget, each and every one of us.  We get swept into the idea that this life requires us to stay on top of it, plan ahead and try to get somewhere, anywhere other than here. 

 

So my gift to you for the holidays is this gentle reminder to breathe…to take a moment to connect with that gift that keeps on giving inside of you and know that this moment is enough and filled with riches. 

Practice:

 

Find a comfortable place to sit with your back supported.  Rest your hands in your lap (fingers Unclasped) or on your thighs.  Take 3 deep breaths in through the nose and slowly out through the mouth as you begin to shift your awareness and observation of the busy mind to the body and the breath.

 

Allow the breath to shift to the nostrils and notice if it feels strained or difficult.  Silently label the inhale as you breath in and the exhale as you breath out for a moment or two, settling in and surrendering to the process.

After a few minutes of labeling allow your focus to scan your body, from your feet to your crown, one breath, and one body part at a time.  And as you pause at each place, give thanks for the gifts you receive, from your feet, your legs, your digestive system, your lungs, heart and brain, and so on. 

 

Finally allow yourself to simply sit with the rhythm of your breath in this moment and sense the gratitude that the antidote is right here with you whenever you need it, and know when you find yourself in the race against time that the gift is within, just breathe!

Advertisements