the llama blog
practicing yoga off the mat.
My meditation practice ebbs and flows. I wish I could say I sit in silence for a several minutes every day. But I don’t. Not always. But sometimes.
I started meditation when I began my journey as a yoga teacher eight years ago. Our teacher taught us various ways to meditate and asked us to choose the path that spoke loudest to us. I’ve tried japa, mantra, guided, breath-centered and other styles of meditation. And to be honest, they all work. They all create a focal point to which the mind can settle and ultimately, relax.
I recall sitting for 30 minutes or more each morning practicing these different meditation methods. The more I practiced, the easier and quicker it became to settle my mind. I was aware of my breath and my thoughts throughout the day. I was calm and focused.
And then my life changed. I, like many people, started a family. My young children’s needs took over my own needs. I was too tired to meditate. I couldn’t sit still because my mind wandered too much. That’s when my physical yoga practice (asana) stepped in. It became my daily movement meditation. It wasn’t as rejuvenating as a 30-minute meditation practice, but I felt more centered when I finished.
As my children have grown, I have tried several times to recommit to a meditation practice only to fail in my mind when I cannot sit every day. I put a lot of pressure on myself as I’m sure many of you do.
My theme for 2019 is FREEDOM. I have decided that a daily meditation practice sounds wonderful, and is awesome if one can do it, but I will not judge myself less because I can only meditate once a week. I give myself freedom to rewrite what this spiritual practice really means, and be happy for what I can accomplish.
Are you similar and place this hidden pressure on yourself? Join me, and be free. Free to be open-minded, and joyful for the quiet moments whenever they happen.