I started meditating 19 years ago and by far this has provided the greatest relief for me from stress and anxiety. Whilst I might see the rabbit hole and even start to step in I can pull my foot back and it has given me the tools to make sure I don’t jump in with both feet like I used to.
For a long time though my meditation was a stand alone practice that I performed at the beginning or at the end of the day in some quiet time I had carved out from the remainder of my life. There is absolutely no doubt that it impacted on the rest of my day and this was certainly evident if I missed a day or two things just did not feel the same. However, it has really been in the last five years or so that I really embedded these practices and embraced the breadth that was available into my whole life and I no longer saw it as a stand alone segment. I really started practicing wherever I am and whenever I need it and sometimes even when I don’t need it. For me this has really provided the difference.
I made sure that when I was walking from client to client that I came into the present I noticed what was around me, looked for the different colours or things that might be of interest and in doing so I was able to reset and recharge between appointments.
I use the experience of having a cup of tea or even a glass of water to really feel the coolness or the warmth and when I do this I come out of my monkey mind and give my nervous system a chance to settle throughout the day.
Each time I sit in a chair I ground down through my feet onto the floor and feel my bottom in the chair and when I do this all of a sudden I am actually right there and not in my head recounting some disaster from the past or worrying about something that is looming. By doing this I at least have a chance to be available to whatever is in front of me.
My family now have a gratitude practice at breakfast which provides a bit of stickiness to the good things that we have in our life early on in the day before we head out and see what the day ahead might bring.
For me weaving these practices into my everyday life has been the icing on the cake. The meditation has for a long time been that very firm platform that has provided the stability for me to step into life and whatever it might throw at me. But by finally allowing these practices to sink and soak in to each part of my day they have not only settled some of the storms (both life’s storms and the storms that I create in my own head) but they have made my life more vibrant and that is the icing for me.