I'd be willing to bet that a lot of you are living in the meditation misery closet- the one where you think it should be easy and amazing but it actually isn't, but because of your belief you don't own up to this or ask anyone for help. Yea, I think most of us hang out in there at some point. Frankly, not enough people share the reality of meditation and mindfulness and these misrepresentations and lack of explanations can easily turn you off because you feel like you're missing something or you're such a hot mess that even meditation can't fix you.
Today I want to discuss sitting, or I should say "hold you position your body while you meditate" because the reality is that you don't have to sit at all. Meditation is the practice of focusing one's mind to a singular point (anchor) in an effort to relieve the stress associated with mental distractions. At no point has it ever been insinuated that a meditation needs to be done in a certain position. Actually that is a lie- the "certain position" that a meditation needs to be done in is one that minimizes discomfort, but how this minimal discomfort is established is completely up to you, today (because tomorrow may be different). So how should you be when you begin meditation? In a way that maintains dignity within the body and minimizes discomfort.
Success, a word we all desire, a word that can be defined in the broadest of spectrums but tends to be lumped into a singular box: career. If you ask someone if they are successful, or have been successful in their lives, chances are one of two things will happen: they will puff out their chest and rattle off the things they have accomplished or they will get slightly red in the face and try to justify why what they have done has been worthy of such a question. Both of these reactions rest in the realm of ego- lifting you above others or dragging you below others. Inevitably though, most peoples minds, upon being asked this question, jump to the realm of career and finance.
What have I done? How much money have I made? What is my rank?
Mindfulness does not have to be a big deal- actually it shouldn't be a big deal- it is simply the practice of paying attention and intentionally taking time, or even just moments, to do so. Although in the beginning stages of exploring mindfulness practices it may be easier to have processes and rituals woven into the day, ultimately it is the mindset, not the practice, that we are seeking to master. What is the mindset? The mindfulness mindset is one that is continuously aware, less reactive and responds to life with care and control. It is the practices that support the mindset, the practices are only relevant if they support the mindset.
Happiness is about learning how to make lemonade with your lemons, right? Actually, I disagree. I also think this saying is a bunch of pretentious hogwash that people use when they want to pretend like they're having a good time. Nothing is more patronizing (and less helpful) than someone telling you to find a silver lining.
Let everything you do be your own choice, following your own internal guidance and timing. This thought came to me this week during Savasana. So often I see people coming out of savanna moving exactly as I tell them to, when I tell them to. This largely ruins the point of the practice- the goal is to get into a more present and intuitive space. Your yoga practice should be the practice of presence, which means tuning into yourself, not into me as the teacher. I am guiding the class to various poses at various times, there is a reason for the sequence, however it is important that you move into each pose and hold each pose in a way that is in-tune to yourself, not myself. Each pose, regardless of the guidance, needs to come from your own inner drive. Does this mean that each person is going to be doing a completely different practice? No, however I suspect this is the fear. This does mean that each person is going to be experiencing a completely different practice, because they will be experiencing their own practice..
Chelsea M Latham
When I was a kid my mom would occasionally refer to me as a Reverend, because I had the need to speak so passionately about just about everything. Little did she know that some day I would build a business upon sharing the wisdom that I am so passionate about. So here you go, here are some bits and bobs of thoughts strung together for your enjoyment.