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Meditation Challenge

En Garde: Year Long Meditation Challenge Day 1

366 Days of Meditation

#chair

I awoke this morning eager to begin my year’s long dedication to meditation. My hair is uncombed and my teeth are not yet brushed, but downstairs I meandered to begin.

With intentions of meditating right away, I sat and opened my phone, but it is Sunday. Things move slower sometimes on Sundays. So, my phone in hand ready to choose a guided meditation, I instead was sucked into the social media vortex I often require meditation to combat because of the firework spirit of my mind! I spent a few minutes scrolling through the lives of others before remembering why I came out here anyway! So, I closed Instagram and opened Ten Percent, my prefered meditation app.

Just then, my chocolate chip cute mutt came by to check on me and I couldn’t help but snap this shot of my meditation buddy. Nothing like more procrastination. Avoidance. Again, more proof of the reason for meditating to focus my fireworks of thought.

Our dog Woody. #pounddog

I thought it’d be so cute if he sat down, looking like he was meditating with me…but you know how real life goes. He went and barked at passing cars and was not interested in me for more than this hot second. So, for real now, I was ready to meditate.

Today, like most, I used Dan Harris’ Ten Percent app to follow a guided meditation. I have completed breathing techniques over the last two years unguided. I have also been able to call up some meditation lessons when stress was high and guided meditation was not accessible in the moment. But, I have yet to do an “unguided” meditation session. With honesty, I am chicken. My mind moves so fast and is so spontaneous with flashing thoughts, I fear I will just continue to be lost in them without a teacher in my ear bringing me back. This is the one app I actually pay the annual fee to access all lessons and highly recommend it. I scrolled through the “Greatest Hits” section of meditation practices. I always look for a 3-5 minute practice (Yes. That brief! I’m no Buddha here and I have never been to an actual mediation course, so really I’m a novice. 3-5 minutes is plenty at this time for me!) (Also, shame on you for judging…you should meditate! Join me! 🙂 HAHAHA! Just kidding!) I chose “Sensations in the Body” by Joseph Goldstein. I mainly chose this one as Joseph G is easy to listen to. He doesn’t sound like a hippie. He sounds like a scientist or a judge. He speak with a low calm voice. Also his messages are centered around how the brain operates and not the messages common with stigmas related to meditation. He is simply factual without emotion. So, I tend to listen and adhere to his direction more than some other gurus. This is an obvious 3rd reason I should meditate, I am cynical. I want to have an open mind…but do I? Probably not if we are really looking at the truth.

Ten Percent App – Check out Dan Harris’ book as well, Ten Percent Happier

And so, I meditated.

It was easy today, again it’s Sunday. No angry parent (I’m in the education industry so my clients are both 5 year olds and their parents) is going to get me today. I have no job related task I’m late on to preoccupy my mind either today; it’s Sunday! My kids are in their PJs lazily waking up to their own day’s work. The laundry will be done…soon. So, I can truly relax.

That does not stop my brain from firing like fireworks. We were tasked to feel body sensations today like itches, soreness, etc. I started to have an irritation from my shirt right on my rib. I couldn’t stand to just “focus on it” so I adjusted my shirt. Not sure you’re supposed to actually move, but I did. I also yawned. Sorry Joe. I was listing and trying, I was, but I totally yawned. I did “note” my yawn, so that’s good, right?!

I also was planning this blog post! I kept thinking about things I might add to this write up, and continually had to “note” and refocus on my body and bodily sensations.

Anywho, 5 minutes later, done!

Through this practice, and daily commitment, I hope to calm my mind learning to not allow my mind’s storytelling to take me away into a world of negativity which all would lead towards a more happy life for myself and frankly all of those to whom I am close. Through this blog, I hope to normalize as well as celebrate mediation allowing others to be invited to this practice for the same benefits I am seeking.

365 Days To Go!


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