The practice of patience guards us against losing our presence of mind. It enables us to remain undisturbed, even when the situation is really difficult. It gives us a certain amount of inner peace, which allows us some self-control, so that we can choose to respond to situations in an appropriate and compassionate manner, rather than being driven by our disturbing emotions. – Dalai Lama
After reading this quote by the Dalai Lama on facebook, it triggered the desire to write a post about meditation. Meditation and mindfulness have brought tremendous value to my life. Whenever something has a positively profound effect, I like to share my experience with others. The practice of meditation has been around for a very long time. I think we each have our own visual of what meditation might look like on the outside. Some of them are probably all zen like in some ashram in India or a Buddhist temple. Some, related to nature, water, mountains, and or the sky. Perhaps the posture for seated meditation with fragrant incense or candles burning. Lying on the ground practicing various breathing techniques and creating an awareness of all of your senses. Maybe it’s at the beginning or end of a yoga class. Whatever images you conjure up, you are in essence creating a vision of what it feels like to practice mindfulness. Presence of mind, body, and soul.
For those who are keen to be fully aware of the space internally and externally and or for those who are looking for inner peace and a sense of calm, or looking to create a powerful sustainable energy within, I highly recommend giving meditation a try. If you are weirded out or skeptical about the benefits but still curious, try it at home. So many of us in our busy day to day lives, could benefit from this approach to slowing down. Even leaders in organizations, and their direct reports, can benefit from leading and living with mindfulness. In fact, a favorite HBR article which highlights the need to slow down and smell the roses is Slow Down, You Move Too Fast by Tony Schwartz. And a coaching colleague and friend of mine, Adam Kay, is embarking on a PhD with a focus on mindfulness and leadership. So there must be more and more interest on the subject even from a scholarly perspective. A link between mindfulness through yoga practice in entrepreneurs has been referenced in Namaste: What Entrepreneurs Can Learn From Yoga. If you have an interest in losing weight with a focus on mindfulness, I encourage you to visit the website of Marlene Keys and Anna Varriano, partners in Mindful Weight Control . Like everything in life, however, I don’t believe meditation is for everyone but I do believe we can all benefit from slowing down and being more mindful. Interested? Keep reading as I offer some suggestions for resources.
There are many resources available today to help us ease into a practice of mindfulness, many of which are low cost and provide us with the flexibility to practice in the comfort of our own home if we wish. As I enjoy the solitude of early morning, I use a DVD by Rodney Yee called A.M. P.M. Meditation which offers short 25 minute meditations. I really like this DVD for a number of reasons. It includes some great breathing techniques, very basic yoga stretches, and has the power to take me away while being fully present. I’ve learned to embrace and expand my reach. This DVD can be purchased online or in person at any Chapters, Indigo or Amazon for under $15.00.
All that said, I’ve recently been introduced to a few new resources suggested through friends. One is an app on the iPAD called Mindfulness which although I have yet to try it, comes with many different settings and options and at a very low cost. Another low cost app is MentalWorkout with 5 programs, one being Mindfulness Meditation. Another friend suggested a book called Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation by author Sharon Salzberg. I also came across a very cool resource on facebook called YogaGlo which offers yoga and meditation classes through live streaming. I was initially intrigued by the name because whenever I tell people my name is Glo, they look at me funny. I always have to explain my name is Gloria but I truly prefer Glo. I recall having a good giggle over that one! Anyway, after doing some research on their website, I realized what a terrific concept this was. Glo in this case stands for “Global” enabling participants from around the world to benefit from some world reknown instructors at a nominal cost and without having to leave the comfort of your own home. I also recommend following their page on facebook because they have great tips, articles and blog posts on practicing yoga and mindfulness. I confess that I have yet to try a class but I know I will in time. YogaGlo has a Beginners Center and is located in Santa Monica, CA.
Hopefully this blog post has been helpful in creating further awareness of how the practice of meditation and mindfulness can be accessed. Although there are many links to external resources and articles, I believe they will prove useful as you embark on your journey of discovery. If you have any additional suggestions for resources, please drop me a comment. I would love to read about them and share with others.
(C) 2012 – True Bliss Coach Gloria Higdon