Okay, so we are all hearing and maybe talking about being mindful, doing yoga and taking time out to meditate. People are thinking, "oh great yet another thing I need to feel bad about not having or finding the time to do." Well hold the phone, because I am here to tell you that if you should or can find the time for anything it should be meditation.
Stop right there, if you think I am saying you need to invest in fisherman's pants, a selection of linen bio degradable T shirts and stop using deodorant, I am not. This is the meditation visual of old; it has moved with the times and is I think the key to a peaceful and happy mind.
Only you live in your mind and it is a busy place, just think for one second just how many thoughts you have in one hour, in one day and in one week. Is it any wonder we are all wrecked? The cultivation of your mental health awareness or surrender to the fact that your mind needs to be minded is like eating healthy food, it doesn't give us an immediate rush but over time it provides a lot more energy.
There is so much noise out there telling us about this, then that and the other is good for us, is healthy and is the latest 'oh my god' change your life training regime or super food.
I am going to deliver some breaking news here and say to just stop. Stop over thinking, over analysing and stop critiquing everything you do, eat, say and do. When it comes to being healthy, you need to move your body every day, eat unprocessed foods and drink water. Full Stop.
But I will say this, one thing we all need to do is to take time out each day and just have calm and simply breathe. The power of this will literally blow your mind, when you are in a months' time faced with a stressful or upsetting situation and you react in a way that is almost alien to you, like if you were watching on you would hardly recognise yourself. Imagine that.
I love the calmness, the switch off and the almost euphoric state you are left in during and post meditation. Last week I was in Boracay in the Philippines (Look it up Paradise) and my friend Ruth who was there a week previous recommended that I attend a yoga and meditation session and so I did.
Off I set out on a little adventure to Station One with a lad on a bike and met Samuel on the roof top of Dante Resort. It was like a scene out of Eat Prey Love and yes of course I was Julia Roberts. We were joined by Antje from Hamburg and so the session began after a very detailed explanation from Samuel about what exactly an active meditation is.
It was broken into 4 10 minutes slots- first eyes closed and shake your body (yes for ten minutes), then eyes closed and dance (yes for ten minutes, then onto the mat and sit upright legs crossed and then it was into laying down to complete the process. The sitting and the lying we can all do, but what about this shaking and dancing? This was the one where you thought "oh what if I do this wrong?" Imagine but that was my first thought. I decided to just give in and let myself go.
Be present and let all my fears go. After 1 minute into the shaking I lost track of myself and just let my body shake freely. Straight from this it was the dancing, eyes closed, on a roof top with two people I didn't know. I just went with the beat. This was the game changer, I couldn't believe it when I suddenly felt my toe bang off a chair leg. How? I mean I didn't realise I had moved at all. But I had almost gone full circle, but felt like I was static in my position. Completely letting go felt freeing.
From this, we discussed how we were feeling and what we experienced and then it was time to talk Jibberish.
This was a full 10 minutes of literally just roaring words and sounds. So much runs through your head here, I thought about all the words that people use to describe me, which in fact don't represent me at all, the me that I know and the people that truly know me. I went through them all in a spin cycle and then they left me.
If you have never experienced calm in your body and head or cannot remember feeling it for a while, this was the feeling when this session was over that washed over me. I left and headed for the beach and walked home.... I remember nothing from the walk but I remember walking and the next thing I was 1.5km down the beach and back at my hotel.
The tranquillity in my mind, the peace and calmness was just bliss. Your face is softer and you are just soft. What a way to treat myself, what a way to respect my tired mind, what a way to say to my mind and my thoughts "hey slow down, stop, take a minute".
Losing yourself in a moment , in a space in time and in a way that scares you is empowering in itself. I am not a fearful person, I will also take a chance, why because to experience life and experience it in a positive way will always make me open the door, start a conversation or simply dance and shake!
Looking after my entire self through physical exercise, good nutrition and always always my precious mind allows me to at least try to lead the largest life as my greatest self.