When we think of meditation we can sometimes get bogged down by the concept. How do I get there, how do I let go, why can’t I do it? These are common questions and concerns but they are also what gets in the way. We are so used to controlling things with our mind that it has become the center of how we function in life and see the world, so that is seems an impossible task to get out of it, and get to a place where it can stop, especially in today’s world. We have forgotten how it is to connect to our inner most being. Maybe the term meditation and it’s perceived definition even gets in our way. Another term to consider and another way of looking at things may be mindful.
We all practice mindfulness in one way or another, every day and in some cases all day long. When your child is ill and you are at work, even though you are there and working on your tasks, you are constantly aware of your child, wondering how they are doing and if they are ok. If your finances are not as you would wish, always in the back of your mind you are wondering how am I going to meet my obligations, will my rent get paid, what can I juggle. Whether you are cleaning your house, or doing your job or digging your garden, a portion of you mind is engaged with this issue. This is mindfulness but not in it’s most positive aspect.
So, instead of finding your quiet space, assuming your lotus position and trying to wrangle your mind into nothingness, maybe practicing a different kind of mindfulness is the answer. Anything can be a meditation, whether you are washing the dishes, working on your car, cooking your supper or even taking your evening walk. When you are doing these tasks, they are familiar and do not require your constant thought or attention and you find your mind wandering to tomorrows needs or planning your grocery list. Instead, feel the joy of the breeze on your face through the open window, get lost in the clouds, sink into a daydream or think of nothing, just allow yourself to be. Spend those moments allowing yourself to forget the bills and the lists and just enjoying a sense of well being. Allow yourself moments of joy and gratitude for the good things in your life, give yourself the gift of letting go. Your hands or your feet may be busy but your mind is not needed for these activities and you can set it free and let it wander. Don’t try to control or make yourself think of this or focus on that, just allow it to wander freely without restriction or judgment and allow the mind to create it’s own dance or adventure. Take a walk through the park and just enjoy the beauty around you, get lost in the sounds of children laughing, listen to the wind in the leaves or sink into the colors of nature, even take a blanket, lay down and enjoy the ever changing shapes in the clouds. Anything can be a meditation when you are mindful of the joy, the peace and the beauty you can find when you let go.