Four -almost five- months flew right past. The blog series on meditation dropped so far down the to-do list that I contemplated deleting the entire blog and slinking away with my blogging tail between my legs. My inner critic ran frantic circles in my head telling me how inept I was and that surely anyone who ever signed up for my blog updates must have unsubscribed by now.
Thankfully, I have learned to hear that voice for what it is…my safety instinct kicking in and trying to protect me from some imagined worst-case scenario. I quiet this voice by saying, “I hear your concern, crazy, little perfectionist dude. It’s ok. I got this. I am going to write anyway.”
If you and I have coached before, this will sound very familiar (see? I told you I practice this stuff, too). If you are reading this, and haven’t coached with me yet, I can tell you that the voice of self-doubt and self-criticism is a loud-mouth that can be quieted…with practice. I urge you to hit me up if you want to know more about this. Right now, though, I want to get back to the whole meditation thing…
If you read the previous two posts, I hope you have begun to see that meditation is not rocket science. It is a way to train the mind to stop running amok with endless to-do’s, far-fetched fears, and general thought shenanigans that increase the stress hormones. But I understand if you are reading this and still feel like you could make it to the moon faster than you could learn to meditate.
We live in a world where there is an app for everything. Maybe you’ve heard there are meditation apps out there. Maybe you have even downloaded a couple of them. Or maybe not. What good are they if you just don’t have time, right? You have a very good point and we can address the whole time thing in another post. But most meditation apps I’ve encountered have a timing feature where you can quiet your mind one minute at a time. Most of them have short “how-to” lessons that are 10 minutes or less. They have meditations for all kinds of things: walking, stress, love, forgiveness, anger, leadership, you name it.
Type “meditation apps” in your favorite internet browser or wherever you get apps and look to see if something strikes your curiosity enough to try it. I use a few different ones because I like variety in my meditation practice. I like Calm, Meditation Studio, Head Space, Smiling Mind and Oprah & Deepak 21-Day Mediation Experience. I have used all of them and found that each has its own ‘flavor.’ The first one I ever tried was Calm and I enjoy its daily 10-minute meditations. The others are all wonderful, too.
If you have specific questions about meditation, meditation apps, or the inner critic, let me know by posting a question below or emailing me. I will post a bit more about meditation in the weeks to come. I have learned that meditation is beneficial around the holidays when we find ourselves with family and friends that push our buttons.