Meditation, we hear so much about it lately. It is supposed to relieve us of almost anything: stress, illness, worries, heartache, lack of sleep, anxiety, depression, etc.
Many of my coaching and counselling clients would love to meditate, but have no idea how to fit it into their busy lives. I can understand that. If that’s you, read on.
Meditation was once defined to me by a Buddhist monk in India as “the space between two thoughts”. When we prolong that space a stillness appears, and in that stillness we find peace and answers; it’s where we re-connect when we’ve lost touch with ourselves. This is what it means to meditate. He also told me that when we start to meditate and we notice lots and lots of thoughts rushing through our minds, that this is a good thing. Do not fear that this is a sign of failure or an indication of not being good at meditation. It’s a sign that you have become a witness of your own mind. And who is it that witnesses? You! You are not your mind. You are not the chaotic, stressful, cacophony of thoughts that seems to blur your ability to focus, think clearly or feel peaceful. You are the still, listening, attentive, alert and awake being that is always present. It’s as if you are the vast sky, and your thoughts are just the clouds passing by. I liked the definition of meditation of this monk, as it made meditation humane, accessible, worth a shot and even appealing. To prolong the space between two thoughts, that sounds do-able, even if it’s just a second at a time.
And one more thing, don’t think you can only meditate when you wake up earlier and sit on a cushion. Be mindful not to make meditation a new “should” on your to-do list. Stay playful and joyous; you can do it in the tube to work, on the platform waiting for the train, in the toilet at work before that stressful meeting, laying in bed before falling asleep, even while waiting in the queue at the bank. Enjoy 🙂
Kind regards, Karin Peeters
Life & Executive Coach, Counsellor & Psychotherapist