I'm shocking my own system by writing this post because about a year ago meditation meant as much to me as a bag of low-calorie chips: meaningless. Over the last so many months, I have truly understood the value of self-care and now actively make time to do things that take care of my mind and body (there is no such thing as 'finding time', you have to create it).
I started getting curious about meditation a few months ago and kept telling Nabeel I wanted to try it but because I'm a professional procrastinator, I kept putting it off. Last month, after getting back from the US, I felt so all over the place. Exhausting trip, exhausting work prior to the trip, with absolutely no time for myself had turned me part-time pyscho. I knew it was time to try this meditation thing out. I had to do something new with my routine to really sort things out.
So one fine morning, before getting down to breakfast, I made myself some green tea, pulled out a cushion and put myself down for my first ever meditation session. I did about 4 minutes and when I emerged from this elevated state of mindfulness, I realised the skies hadn't parted and the clouds looked the same and I basically didn't feel any different. But I promised myself to do this again the next day.
Day two, day three, pretty much felt the same. Day four, I woke up and found myself looking forward to my meditation session so I lit a candle in honor of this emotion. Day five, I even sprayed some mist for some additional sex appeal. One week down and I was on my way to falling in love with meditation.
Early mornings do something for my soul that no other part of the day can do. Adding meditation into my morning routine has step changed the game like nothing else. It's so simple but so powerful and COMPLETELY sorts your brain out. And I've been doing it for only about three weeks.
So despite initially thinking, I wouldn't talk about this on the blog (which is why no one saw anything related to it on Snapchat as well), I decided to share this new love of mine with you guys because 1) We're friends, 2) Maybe some of you will join me and we can do this brilliant thing together 3) Possibly get tips from those of you who already do it. All good reasons.
Last weekend, I took some extra time to create a sexy spot for my meditation. It took me ten minutes to put this together for something I was going to execute for just about the same time, but it was totally worth it. I was buzzing to get started. (I like investing time in setting things up for myself; I realise I have a problem but I also have zero regrets, lulz).
So anyhoo, now I think I'll just talk to you about what I know and do and where I want to hopefully take this as I grow.
WHAT IS MEDITATION?
I don't know the correct, proper definition, you can always google that. To me it's just a tiny bit of time set aside for myself where I simply let my mind be and focus on thinking about nothing.
HOW DO I DO IT?
1. Find myself a comfortable spot with a cushion. Sit on it (very important). I like sitting at the same spot everyday, in my living room, next to the window.
2. Put on a gentle timer for 10 minutes. Nothing that sounds like I'm at an underground rock band's first public performance.
3. Sit upright, spine straight, close my eyes, clear out my head and focus on my breathing (in, out, in, out). There are a bunch of ways you can clear your head. Since I'm at beginner level, I chose to focus on my breathing because it felt like the easiest thing that I could keep my mind on instead of thinking about stuff like aaloo gosht or baingan (my mind has a lot of space for romantic thoughts about food).
4. Do this for ten minutes, finish up and get going with my day.
ACCESSORISING MY SESSION
I like some disco in everything I do so once I realised I was enjoying this, I added things to the mix to make it awesome in a holistic way. I light a candle, turn on my diffuser, spray some of my bed mist.
On a side note, I'm so lame that I specifically picked the bed mist I have from the Sakura collection at Rituals (I have many of their bed mists, lulz) because it's based on the annual Cherry Blossom flowering in Japan. Cherry Blossoms bloom for a short amount of time every year so the collection is symbolic for the fact that beauty is momentary and you should enjoy everyday. So in my head I imagine doing meditation as a new thing for myself and enjoying simple things in my everyday life, matching with my product choices. Wow, I'm pretty lame. But it totally works for me, you guys, I can't help it. Hashtag no judgments. (Also, I totally want to go to Japan for the Cherry Blossom flowering one day)
WHERE DO I WANT TO TAKE THIS?
I want to explore this more so I have some to-do items on my meditation agenda.
1. Create a dedicated space to do this everyday. After the fancy setup I did last weekend, I really want to create a spot that stays forever. But I have limited space in the house, so I'm confused about where to do this. Going to try and fit this into my guest room/partial studio when I get around to setting it up.
2. Explore guided meditation. There are actually people you can list to and meditate to different messages/content. If you guys have any kickass recos, let me know (nothing too long though).
3. Get Nabeel to try it. (Nabeel, if you're reading this, I feel your pain but you should have chosen your life partner with due diligence)
4. Take a meditation class somewhere. Any recos, send my way, bros.
IF YOU WANT TO GIVE MEDITATION A SHOT, HERE ARE SOME THOUGHTS
1. It feels SO good to meditate. My head has never felt clearer. I never want to give it up.
2. Start with even a couple of minutes and bring your mind back each time it wanders. No one drops weight the first day at the gym, you can't possibly feel the effects of meditation on your first round.
2. If you think you're too busy and can never find the time for this, read this piece by a super busy mom. I loved it.
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Candle, Bed Mist & Diffuser: Rituals (The Sakura Collection right here) / Plants, Sheepskin: IKEA / Books: DIY, see here
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Thazzz it. Hope we can talk more on the blog sometime again, about this absolutely beautiful thing I've found. Until next time.