At the end of September I wrote a blog about doing a Loving Kindness Meditation in a yoga class. I stated at the end of that blog that I was going to do a 30 day meditation challenge and write about what happened. Since it has been well over 30 days I felt it was time for the update. I should mention at the onset that I did not complete thirty days in a row of meditation. I had the best of intentions when I started and yet it did not work out. I can make up a million reasons why this may have happened but the simple fact is that I did not make time each and every day to meditate. I practice yoga several times a week and that is a moving mediation. I was trying to challenge myself to sit in mediation. So I didn’t count all of the yoga practices I did in this time.
I made notes after each meditation I did about how I felt afterwards and what I thought of the meditation in general. I mostly did guided meditations. I started by looking up meditations on you tube. Some of these were okay. I found that sometimes I couldn’t connect with what the guided voice was saying. They used terms that made no sense to me. One particular mediation I did the woman was saying that I was a vortex and I was in the vortex. I can’t figure that statement out. Another one was a male British voice who proclaimed “I am the blood of stars”….What? Seriously, if you can explain that to me I will be forever grateful. Statement like that took me out of the meditation even if just for a moment. I eventually moved off of you tube and started using the UCLA website. They have a series of podcasts from the Mindful Awareness Research Center. These meditations were amazing! The woman who led them was Diana Winston and I would encourage anyone looking for guided meditations to try these out. She uses language that is relatable. She spoke of inner goodness and authenticity. I also did one about Loving Kindness. I wrote in my notes after each one of these that I understand where she is coming from. I was able to focus on my breath and felt deeply connected.
A few of the meditations I did were 30 minutes and had sections of silence in them. I have always been slightly skittish about silent meditation. I have done it before but very sporadically and only for short periods of time. This time I couldn’t believe how lovely it was! I felt so relaxed afterwards and was able to go deeper into myself than I had with the guided meditations. Last week in a yoga class we sat in silent mediation for ten minutes. I swear it felt like 5 minutes. I am not sure what I would feel about doing 20 or even 30 minutes of silent mediation. The thought makes me a little anxious. I wonder why that is? Am I afraid of what would surface? Am I afraid I couldn’t sit still that long? Yes to both of these. It is quite possible that I may never get to the point of thirty minute silent mediation. But I would love to try harder to make time to mediate at least a few minutes a day. I think it would be beneficial to me in so many ways.