Surrender. I find myself lately consciously choosing to seek out activities and practices which take me out of my comfort control zone, into a place of surrender. YIELD is the new word circling through my head. Because as laid back as I try to be perceived. As chill as I am. As flexible and understanding, I still see instances where I grip onto control. I have been a recovering perfectionist for years. In recent years I have morphed into someone described as fiercely independent. I believe there is a point where you have to let others in though. Independence is great, but I have to be aware of letting others in. Otherwise I notice I’ll create this feeling of separation. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. I run this line through my head, because it is true. The more I open up. The more I am vulnerable. The more I share my soul, thoughts and give my heart to others, the more I feel CONNECTED. I can relate to just about anyone if I am willing to be open. If I yield. Instead of being staunchly set in my way, plans, itinerary, ideas, lost in some future tripping, I stop and LISTEN. Let ideas, creativity, and conversations take over and FLOW. When I let go. When I get back to that Eckhart Tolle NOWness.
I am guided and taken care of. Let go of controlling the future. I am taken care of. I always have been. For even when I look back (for it is always easier to glance back) I see how we are being guided and that things happened at the perfect moment. In the moment things may seem like a struggle. There are challenges. But yield. Surrender. Let go. And keep the faith that something better is coming to you in the future. Maybe it is the Sagittarius in me, but I always have the optimism that life will get better. The better I get at surrendering, the more I see how I am taken care of. Unreal connection. Things arrive at the opptune time. Job or money opportunities pop up when I need some cash (usually just the right amount of money). People and connections. New opportunities. An adventure. A present. I notice daily small little signs. In the mornings I like to hit my meditation area. Once there, I offer up surrender and ask to be guided.
So this was a nice little introduction into the topics I will be covering this week. The topics will be more from my own personal experience. Because in life, I believe it is about finding what works for each and every one of us. Exercise and eating and meditation programs are diverse, because we are diverse. YOU are unique and unprecedented. Connect and do what feels right to YOU. Don’t do something because someone else is. My meditation space isn’t going to look like anyone else’s. Hiking is a mindful practice for me. I like yoga. But to some it may be another form of expression. Follow your heart, because you can’t let go and truly surrender if you are holding onto an idea of what is right. If you’re trying to do what you perceive is right. Dive. Dive in whole-heartedly. Do YOUR thing.
Practice. Life is one big practice session. As I mentioned in the beginning I have been practicing how to incorporate activities in my life that allow me to slip into a state of surrender. What works for me? Meditation. Mindfulness. Yoga. Hiking. I love to get on my yoga mat and surrender myself to my practice. Get lost and connected in a pose. But let us begin this week with meditation. It is something I like to do daily. It something I like to do in the morning when I wake. At night before I go to bed. And the prevalence of meditations benefits are pretty abundant these days. Here are some general ways how meditating can benefit you. Later this week I’ll cover some different meditation practices and ideas:
- This is a big one for me. I am a fan of Eckhart Tolle, power of now goodness. Meditation can help us to slow down. Show up. Be aware. And stay grounded. We can return to the moment we’re in. Reel in our thoughts straying to and fro from past to future. Breathe and return to the nowness. That is what is relevant.
- This too really speaks to me. I am also a huge Thoreau admirer. I have carried his thoughts on listening from the beginning of our relationship: The greatest compliment that was ever paid me was when one asked me what I thought, and attended to my answer.These days we live in a state of busyness. This even effects how we listen. We’ve lost the engagement and true art of interaction. We get wrapped up in thinking of what we’re going to say while they’re talking, that we miss out on what they are actually trying to convey to us.
- Brain waves. There are ALL kinds of articles out there about the positive effects of mediation on our brain waves.
- Meditation can help you stress less. I feel like this should seem like common sense. Get in that flow zone. You know, inhale the good shit, exhale the bullshit thoughts.
- You’ve cleared your thoughts and that mind of yours. Now your creativity is ready to flow and ooze out. Embrace it. Paint. Write. Bake after you meditate.
- Better productivity. Clear thinking, you’re ready to rock and roll on some work. Meditate before school or a test? I read a book on running before school and the benefits of getting the kids going. At the time I read it, I thought it would be bomb to incorporate yoga or meditation practices into pre-class school time. Get them calm and thinking clearly. Zenned and reading to pen.
- We all want sound sleep? Why not implement as much positive stuff as possible to help you hit the pillow HARD. Why you’re at it, check out yogic sleep (good stuff).
- Better CONCENTRATION and FOCUS. Just think of athletes and visualizations. Clear that pretty little head of yours, be present, and get to work.
- Studies show that meditators have longer telomeres (fancy bits of DNA associated with how long you live).
There is even more out there, and the benefits of meditation are so obvious that practicing should seem like a no-brainer. But meditate because you want to. Try it. Try different forms (as I mentioned I’ll cover some techniques on Thursday). But do it because it feels good to you. I meditate because it reconnects me. It fills me with energy. With light. It cleanses my body and soul. It opens me up. It keeps me vulnerable. And it feels damn good. What do you do? How do you wind down? What keeps you connected? How do you stay open?