I accidentally began meditating last year.
After leaving Christianity and my need to be affirmed by toxic people, in the year of 2014, I changed things up a bit. I woke up one morning and remained in bed for five minutes in silence. After a while, the duration of silence was extended to twenty minutes. I felt lighter, I saw life more clearly, and, I began to understand the sentence, “Being in the moment.” Most importantly, I learned then that I was an overthinking queen with pessimism as my gaudiest crown.
Thanks to meditation I don’t deeply ruminate as much and I haven’t been as lost in my thoughts as I used to be. I randomly laugh in the middle of the day for no reason and I smile more. I am more content and satisfied with the simplicity of life than ever before. When I walk outside of my building in the morning, I smile at the winter chill or the autumn breeze. I give the obnoxiously big leaf that’s stuck on a gate wide, happy eyes.
I even like observing adults rushing their imaginative, beautiful and unfocused children to school. I laugh at those little ass dogs with “struggle legs” attempting to catch up with their owner! I chuckle at tripping over the Chinese food to-go box while I was laughing at the dog with the struggle legs! Before I chose to meditate, I would be too busy entertaining thoughts in my head to even notice a nine-foot poodle named, Sammy.
I eventually stopped denying my voyage of mindfulness, cleared my mind, and began to research. I read books and articles and watched a few informative YouTube clips about meditation. I was a bit iffy about it because I was still dealing with leaving Christianity.
I am a former queen of overthinking, so of course deciding to clear my mind of constant contemplation would take three hero queens, nine Shreks with their accompanied donkeys, and a Rumpelstiltskin to cease my thoughts. After a while, I began to find a system/ techniques/exercises that worked for me and I will hold them close until it’s time for me to branch out.
In the mornings, I center and ground. There are various methods and techniques to grounding and centering. I am not claiming to be an expert! I am merely sharing what I do:
- Inhale slowly for five seconds and exhale for eight
- Repeat step 1 three times.
- Close your eyes and repeat step 1 one more time
- Visualize a spiral. Any kind of spiral. Mine is purple and it sparks every now and then, because I like sparks, damn it!
- Allow all passing thoughts (because I think of the most ludicrous things when centering) to be sucked into the spiral.
- When all you can think about is that spiral and nothing else, stay in that moment as long as you can. Even if it’s only three seconds, that’s enough.
- Open your eyes slowly and repeat step one
I sit up straight in a chair when centering and grounding. I refuse to lie down because I’ll I either go to sleep or think about how fluffy my mattress is. Once I ruminate on my fluffy mattress, I’m going to snuggle under my mink blanket, and it’s all over then.
At night, I do steps 1-3 of my centering method and then reflect on 5-7 things or people who I am grateful for. Of course, a random thought will pass through my mind and I make sure not to shoo it away. I ALLOW IT TO PASS AND RE-FOCUS.
There’s something special about shutting up and just breathing…