Meditation: Calm, How to Meditate: The Concentration Gym Length: 11 minutes Where: Home Office/Guest Room, Los Angeles How It Felt: Like taking a deep breath
(“End of month” checkin coming tomorrow! February is such a quick month, the end snuck up on me. How is tomorrow March??)
Back to the “How to Meditate” series today! I definitely needed a good meditation, as I’m feeling a bit cramped up mentally. I’m picturing some solid yoga in my immediate future, too. My brain feels the way my closet looks when I start organizing it but stop halfway through. Thoughts everywhere, bits of things I started but didn’t finish strewn about….
Just a mess, basically.
Today it felt great to do a shorter, straightforward meditation session. Jeff Warren does a great job with this series, injecting a good mixture of teaching, lighthearted humor, and room to breathe. I’m loving this one.
“The Concentration Gym” really did feel like a mental workout. The idea today was to work on finding what “home base” works best by trying a few different options. During meditation, we need something to focus on, be it the breath, a distant sound, a phrase repeated, a physical sensation- whatever works. (At least, at this level I need something to focus on- maybe that changes as people get really advanced? Maybe it’s always part of meditating? A question to investigate…)
We cycled through the above options to see what felt best. I’m a big fan of focusing on my breath, even if I can’t always stay focused. Just remembering to stop and breathe is such an important part of my life, I like having an excuse to really pay attention to the breath for a few minutes.
Right now, if you’re reading this, pause and take a deep breath. All the way in…. all the way out……
I mean, doesn’t that feel amazing??
So, after experimenting with the other “home base” points offered in this meditation, I’m sticking with breath. It works for me, as well as anything is working. I still have to practice actually concentrating, staying focused, but, wouldn’t you know it, that’s exactly what I plan to do for the rest of the year! And forever!
I feel like my lifelong yoga practice has really set me up for success in meditation. Focusing on the breath, staying present, accepting that practice doesn’t call for perfection, coming as you are without judgement- all of these are concepts yoga has drilled into me over the years.
(That sounds more aggressive than it should, but you know. “Gently nudged into me” doesn’t have the same ring.)
I wouldn’t say I’m a natural, but I’m not struggling with the basic concepts of anything I’m learning in this experiment, and I’m sure that’s a big reason why. A second reason? Meditation always, always helps my little brain, so what can I say? I trust it! I am not questioning anything that comes at me right now in any of these meditation sessions. I believe in this stuff!
I leave you with a great George Lucas quote courtesy of Calm. I met the man once, at a fundraiser in the Hamptons, which I love sharing because it makes me sound fancy AF. Our friend Ne-yo was holding the event, and he introduced us. (See? Double fancy.) I found Mr. Lucas abrasive and odd, for the record, but hey, you can’t deny the man is a genius in his ways!
I wish him a long, happy life, comforted by his badass wife, beautiful children, and billions of dollars. Get yours, George. Good for you.