I’ve spent the last year trying something new, which ended up taking me away from posting regularly here: I’ve been journaling.
Oh, sure, I’ve dabbled with a journal in the past–but nothing like this. I’m talking about a regular practice. Showing up daily. Allowing enough time for it to unfold in its own direction. Writing for the audience of myself. Being present.
Ho. Lee. Cow. What an amazing experience! I tune into myself more, get clarity, and make better decisions. I have greater compassion and gratitude. I am more frequently in a state of grace, for longer periods of time.
Yes, I still stumble. But wow, what a difference–in both my process and my outcomes!
I started journaling by accident when I decided I wanted to learn more about meditation. You can’t argue with the benefits you hear about, and sometimes you’re finally ready.
Here’s what I learned about meditation: it’s simpler than I thought, and it doesn’t look like I thought.
Meditation takes many forms, not just the traditional image of sitting cross-legged with eyes closed and speaking “ohm.” (Although you can do that, too!) You’re likely already practicing some form of it, whether you call it that or not.
Any time you are fully engaged in the present moment, for and with yourself, you’re tiptoeing on the edge of meditation. And when you show up regularly for this, you will begin to experience the benefits meditation has to offer. Whether you call it that or not.
So find what resonates with you. Is it physical activity? Try walking the dog. Do you prefer to read? Find a daily devotional. Like to write? Get a notebook and create a journal. Enjoy hearing words of encouragement? Listen to a meditation recording online.
The main points are to show up for yourself and to be fully present.
The rest will unfold for us grasshoppers.
Here are a few resource ideas for you, if you are looking to start a meditation practice:
Daily guides from Science of Mind Magazine: http://scienceofmind.com/
Audio meditations from The Chopra Center (they have really great apps, too): http://www.chopra.com/
Anything from Gabrielle Bernstein: http://gabbyb.tv/
The shoes in your closet: go for a walk. Even a short one to start.
Paper and pen, or Google doc: begin a journal
Down-to-earth applicable inspiration: Pam Grout’s blog