Miss part one? Here it is.
While I have moments of worry (okay, more than moments), I also have a sweet moment in the morning where I leave it to the side.
You may have a practice that works for you. Continue.
You may want to try a new practice. Do that.
I have always been a supporter of daily practice, but not a very consistent practice-er. I am grateful that I began a consistent practice last year, long before I thought I needed it.
And as my meditation teachers keep reminding me, even when I fall off the practice, I can always begin again.
(Or for the first time.)
Practice, Practice, Practice
There are three practices I have consistently followed, allowing me to come back to my body and back to the present moment where I can feel still. Where the world and the news and the reality of this time are not pushing me to the ground.
When I meditate, I use an app on my phone. It’s simple, it gives me a daily offering that’s only 10 minutes, and it is ready when I am. I sit with the practice of the day and there are some days when I’ve just cried through it. There are other days when I think I did it ‘well.’ And there are other days when my mind just races back and forth between worry and judgment. But there are always a few moments of peace. And that is the practice. Come back. Come back.
Breathwork is something that can be adjusted for your needs. I have followed breathwork recordings because that helped me understand how to breathe and how to let go of the voices that often ask: ‘am I doing this right?’
I also offer that taking a deep breath into the lower belly for four counts, holding for four counts, and releasing for six counts is also something that works for me. You can choose another set. I’ve found that having a longer exhalation is helpful for reducing stress.
I’ve also done breathwork that looks like an inhale until comfortably full and then immediately going into the exhale, then immediately into the inhale again. This is a more active and releasing process and one that can offer more intense experiences.
Things get stuck in me (and maybe you too) so moving my body each day has become as essential as water. I have a goal of walking for at least 30 minutes a day, coming into contact not only with the outside world, but also with my muscles and nature.
I’m also starting to incorporate dance and shaking to help loosen the grip of stress and trauma sensations. Move as long as it feels good. Move as much as feels right for you. Even the smallest movement is one that keeps things flowing.
May we continue to care for ourselves as best we can.
May we continue to return to the present moment.
May we find each other again, ever more resilient.
May we remember that we are a spell that transcends time and location.
And when we return to the dance of togetherness, may we return whole.