Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Meditation Report: Liz's Day One

I had two things going against me with first day on the challenge. 1) It was raining in the morning and I was a little obsessed with making sure I caught an early bus--they run more regularly the earlier I stand outside. So, I was tempted to ditch my 10 minute time-out for an earlier bus ride. 2) And this is not unique to any day--it's a constant in my life--I really struggle with sitting still. I get antsy, fidgety, etc. Still, I'm determined to give the meditation a try so I swallowed my angst and didn't check CTA bus tracker and sat on a couch for 10 minutes of nothingness. 

Except, the moment I closed my eyes and imagined a mellow, serene beach scene, my mind started to whir. How will I describe this experience? How long have I been sitting here? What work am I going to do on my 20 minute bus commute? What should I make for dinner tonight? Did I put X, Y and Z on my to-do list? And so on. So, I didn't feel mentally refreshed or focused, but it was helpful to note that this is probably really good for me....I don't think it's healthy how OCD I am about making the most of every second. I tend to run-around like a chicken-with-my-head-cut-off (pardon the gross expression) and most of the time--I think--it's self-created. The world is not going to come to an end if I have to stand in the rain to wait for a bus or if I put off thinking about taking the pizza dough out of the fridge so it's thaw for dinner or if I don't add a new line-item to my to-do list at this exact second. I also found that I had an easier time chilling out when I opened my eyes and focused on a lamp. Something about "using my imagination" didn't click with me, and it put my brain into overdrive. When I made myself zone in on something with my eyes open, I felt the internal whirring slow substantially. One more thing I learned: Going forward, I'm going to set my kitchen timer for 10 minutes so I don't constantly check my watch to see how many minutes have passed. Posted by Liz

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