Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The New Year's Resolution

We are all ( mostly all ) guilty of making those new year's resolutions that are so well meaning when we think of self -care and so easy to forget or abandon when time gets in the way. Exercise, thoughtful eating, more patience and tolerance, volunteerism .... the list is endless. The intention is to make us healthier, "better" people, all around.

I teach and facilitate meditation exercises and practices and I believe that meditation is the answer to keeping those resolutions. Whether it is TM, Mindfullness-based, Zen, kinetic or simply ( hugely ) visualization; I am convinced that the practice depends on the most important resolution and that is practice.

Many groups have capitalized and plagerised on Nike's famous "Just Do It ". Well add me to the list of offenders. One doesn't learn a new language or master the violin without a lot of practice. Every kid who participates in a sport goes to "practice". " Practice makes it Perfect", was that Benjamin Franklin? The adage has become part if our vernacular.

I teach visualization as a way to manage your labor. There is no better way ( in my opinion ) to "get out of the labor" in-between contractions, than putting yourself in that predictable and familiar place than your personal visualization. Those of you who know me, know that I go to my maternal grandmother's house ( she's been gone for decades ) as a four year old, to get out of my head into the safest, most accepting place that have ever known. It works as a meditative practice, everyday. I practice going to Grandma's house twice a day to manage the stress of daily living. It allows me a respite from the travails of daily life, just like it can for the anticipation of that next "dreaded" contraction.

Go away! But you must practice. Everyday. Whether you are training for a marathon or training for the endurance of labor, your brain, your mind must know where it's going. Then, when you are in the actual situation and you need the skills to succeed, you have had the hours of practice necessary to accomplish your goal.

Make it the most important resolution for this new year. Whatever your preferred method of meditation and whatever your imagined goal, practice, everyday, better, twice a day. Get where you are going by practicing. Simply knowing how to or that you should will not suffice. Sit in a chair and close your eyes; take a few deep, cleansing breaths and begin to spiral on down your personal path to transcending your reality into the world of simply being in one precious moment at a time. When you find yourself moving into the thoughts that crowd your life, get back to the breath or your personal, special spot in the universe. In my case, I am back in my Grandma's house. It's the best place I could ever practice being.

Happy New Year. I hope that you practice and that all of your goals are accomplished.