No, really–the concept of my mind finding quiet is just… ummm… weeellll… Have we met? There is nothing quiet, calm or peaceful about me. Or so it would appear. My clients see it because I spend most of my time truly tuning into them with active listening; but even then–my mind is taking in what they are saying and actively listening for connections to other parts of their situation.
And that’s kind of a problem, actually. I mean, it’s great on many levels, but I’m finding that when stress levels rise I’m no longer graceful under fire. None of that is good for me or anyone around me. But seriously–meditation? I just couldn’t wrap my head around it. I felt like that was something for people who don’t have as much on their plate as I do and somehow truly believed you could leave your body. I felt like it was trying to hypnotize someone who was actively trying NOT to be hypnotized.
But fate intervened for me a few weeks ago. I was listening to a lecture by Deepak Chopra that I had missed during my health coach training and it really resonated with me. In fact, it brought together a lot of loose ends about my faith that crossed with my science and connected it in such an amazing way that I made my husband listen to the lecture. Since Chopra is a medical doctor (endocrinology and then neuro-endocrinology–which is the study of brain chemicals), he was able to explain to me in solid biochemistry how the mind and body connect in ways that affect our health. Since I’m very geeky like that, it was one of the best lectures I’ve ever heard. 🙂
Updated in late October to add:
It was interesting to say the least. A few days in, my husband noted that I was handling the kids better. Of course, stupid me: I had started a new supplement at the same time that I started the meditation and the supplement was supposed to help me calm down a bit, too.
I stopped the meditation challenge at Day 9. Coincidentally, I stopped the supplement, too. Within days, I was a serious grouch again. Believing that the supplement caused the positive change, I went back to it without the meditation–so I could isolate my reactions to one thing or the other, definitively.
Two weeks. Nothin’.
I went back to meditating daily (since my husband had bought the series from the meditation challenge). Three days… magic. I’m completely sold now.
In fact, I’m now very committed to finding ways to quiet my mind. I’m going to start with yoga. I actually DO like yoga, so that’s a plus.
So I invite you to find new ways to quiet your mind. I’ve spoken about the need for your physical body to rest via sleep; but quieting the mind only contributes to your physical body’s ability to sleep. It is also a profound stress and anxiety reducer–which reduces the output of stress-related chemicals in your body that can cause damage and mayhem.
Whatever it is, find it. Walking, meditating, exercising. Quiet the mind. Clear it of thought.
If you are interested in learning about meditation, here are some links that will help you learn more–free of charge.
The Chopra Center 21-day Meditation Challenge (this is the fall 2012 one–Google for more recent if needed)