Last week I was in a funk. Everything seemed out of my control. All my thoughts teetered on full-blown pessimism.
My son wouldn't enter school in the morning without a total meltdown (his tiny face covered in tears, begging me not to let go of his hand as the school staff took him into the building), every meal with my children involved someone whining/crying/throwing tantrum (Paul only likes rice and beans, Rita won't eat beans, that kind of thing), my baby wouldn't nap (teething), both daughters were diagnosed as lactose intolerant (after months of one child with severe constipation and one having the opposite problem, trying every method to return their digestive tracks back to perfect health, and so. many. dirty. diapers.), homework time for my son was insanely tedious (just straight-up refusal to do it), my husband and I were bickering about the mundane details of our life together (you know, like who is right and who is wrong), lots of traffic, lots of tension, lots of stress...and, among other things, my IPod officially broke (after weeks of faulty function following a cracked screen incident).
In the scheme of life, none of this detailed list is all that serious, I know. In fact, it isn't what was happening, it was how I responded to what was happening.
My negative reaction to it all only perpetuated the cycle. I felt disconnected, unsupported, helpless, and alone, despite the fact that I am very connected, extremely supported, "powerful beyond measure," and never alone.
Finally, I remembered that I have a choice. I can choose to see it all as really unfortunate and annoying and difficult OR I can choose to see it differently. I can take a few deep breaths and change the thought pattern. So I decided to return to the only method I know for solving this kind of thing, self-work, and more specifically, meditation.
Ten short minutes, timed with a timer, mid-day in silence, eyes closed. Long deep breath. My mind wanders of course, but I gently guide it back to my inhale or a mantra. This is easily available to us all. After just a week straight, I am always amazed at how different I feel. I am more patient, more compassionate, and more positive when I incorporate meditation into my day. Everything seems so much better even if nothing has changed at all.
1. Sit in a comfortable upright position, with a long straight spine.
2. Breathe in and out through your nostrils. Allow your belly to expand on the inhale and draw back toward your spine on your exhale.
3. If you are using a mantra, repeat it silently.
I am love.
I am enough.
Peace begins with me.
I am a miracle.
I am surrounded by love and light.
I am supported.
4. As your mind wanders, gently guide it without judgment back to your breath or the mantra.
5. Be kind to yourself. There is nothing to achieve in this practice but a little peace of mind.