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Meditation Monday: Grieving

Earlier this month, Mister’s cousin suddenly passed away.  They grew up together and were rather close, so his passing has really taken a toll on our family.  He was a great friend and father and sometimes I think that makes it harder.  Mourning him opened up my own wounds about the people that I have lost.  As much as you want to celebrate their life, the thought that you’ll never talk to them again stings you over and over.

The grieving process is such a personal thing.  Everyone has their own way to mourn their loved one.  Reminiscing about the good times you shared, taking a walk, or even doing an activity that person used to enjoy are all ways to grieve.  And the length of time that it takes to heal varies from person to person.  My grandma and I were very close my whole life.  We did everything together – travel, bingo, church, movies, made forts with the couch cushions.  She even stayed in my college dorm with me for a week at 89 years old!  When she passed, I was so hurt that my buddy was gone.  It was very hard to let her go, but that would have been selfish of me to wish she had lived longer (because she was sick).  She lived a great life and I’m thankful that I got to spend so much time with her.  I say all of that to say, if you are grieving someone right now, it will get easier.  It doesn’t seem like it will, but the old saying is true, time heals all wounds.  And it’s not that you love or miss them any less, but the sting subsides a bit and you begin to actually celebrate their life and smile when you think of them.

Please take 10 minutes to practice this meditation.  I wish peace and healing to you.

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9 Simple Tips To Start The New Year Off Right

Everyone always talks about having balance in life.  What does that even mean?  When I hear people talk about achieving balance I imagine it coming from a vegan who doesn’t have kids and spends their afternoons doing yoga on the beach.

Coincidentally, my niece is a vegan with no kids who seriously does yoga on the beach in the afternoon.  Go figure. Check her out on IG @ modern_day_hippi

For the rest of us, how can we achieve that in our busy, complex lives?  Well, I’m no expert on the yin and yang of the best way for everyone to live, but I’ll tell you what I did to get myself back on track.

Backed away from social media.  My cell phone is never far from me, therefore neither is social media.  It is easy to get overwhelmed by all of the sad or frustrating posts on Facebook (my media of choice) so my goal was to stay away from Facebook for just one day a week so that I could get a break.  I ended up staying away for 10 days consecutively!

Meditated.  I know, I know, you’ve probably heard this one a million times, but it really works.  According to Live And Dare, there are 76 scientific benefits to meditation including stress reduction and mental clarity.  I meditate before bed, when I first wake up or on my lunch break (aka the baby’s nap time).  If you need meditation music click here.

I made a list of 7 things I like to do and 7 things I have to do.  Everyday I picked one from each list and by the end of the week I felt pretty productive.

Meal planned.  I’m a newbie and only prepped food for a few days, but it freed up my evening so I wasn’t rushing to squeeze in my son’s bath before his bedtime routine.  Plus Mister didn’t starve.  Gold star for me!

Drank more water and took a walk outside.  ‘Nuff said.

Pampered myself.  I did a home pedicure, put on a dress, had a glass of wine and read a book.  Self-care is wildly undervalued, yet highly important.

Set up boundaries with toxic people.  Making conversations quick and utilizing texting has reduced some stress in my life.

Did something fun (NOT watching tv).  I picked up 5 books from the library, a bit ambitious I know, to get me back in the groove of reading.   Went outside and my son made chalk art in the driveway while I huffed and puffed on a cheap bubble wand.  Note to self: get a bubble machine.

Hung out with friends.  Getting together with the girls revives me.

So there you have it.  Start simple.  Give these tips a try and let me know how it works out.  What are your New Year’s goals?  What steps are you taking to achieve balance in your life?  Leave your suggestions below!

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Meditation Monday: The Insomniac

Must. Have. Sleep.  This past weekend, Mister had a few days off work and it was really nice to spend time together.  Making breakfast in the morning, drinking coffee on the deck, taking an afternoon walk and spending time as a family.  As nightfall approached and our son was in bed, we sat together on the couch, cuddled up and gazed into each other’s eyes.  He knew what I wanted and he was excited to oblige me.  We kissed softly, then had sweet, sweet… Xbox time.  Yes, Xbox – the digital ménage à trois to our relationship.  Hey, don’t judge us!  We’re just like other “grown up” parents in many ways.  We may live an alternative lifestyle, but it is something that we have in common, so it’s all good.

It was so wonderful to be able to chill, uninterrupted and level up our characters while discussing the best styles of fighting, missions and other awesome stuff that the other may not know about.  The only problem is being able to fall asleep after playing for 5 hours straight.  Similarly, many of you have a hard time shutting down after working, caring for your family all day or if you truly have insomnia.  What better way to get Mister (and all of you) back on track after a long weekend of working or playing than to post a good meditation video?  So forget trying to #TurnUp, get in your bed and #TurnDown!

 

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Meditation Monday: The Stressed

TGIM!  Yes, I said Thank Goodness It’s Monday.  Don’t hear that one very often – or pretty much ever.  This past weekend was very rough and I’m happy that it is over.  My son was having an unusually painful teething day, my errands were scattered around town, I left a blanket in the washing machine – which I’m sure has 15 different kinds of mold on it by now.  I barely cooked a real meal, my husband worked all weekend, the dog destroyed his bed again and no matter how much I cleaned, the house was still a mess.  Oh yeah, and my little love muffin hid the base to the house phone so I couldn’t charge it.  Needless to say, I was stressed.  Everything just seemed to go wrong and the little issues kept piling up.  At one point I laid on my bed, closed my eyes and wished that a cleaning/cooking/nanny fairy would fix it all.  Well I am no fairy, but I am the cleaner, cook and nanny so those jobs were hardly getting done.  Woosah!

Continuing with my efforts to incorporate meditation into my life, I decided to look for a video that would help me relax and get things back on track.  I really like this video because it reminds me that I can only do so much and to focus on one thing at a time.

What are some ways that you relieve the stress in your life?  Please leave a comment below and let me know about your meditation experience.

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Meditation Monday: The Novice

As a wife and mommy, sometimes I get so caught up with caring for my baby and husband, managing the house, running errands, handling administrative tasks and learning to cook (stay tuned for that post) that I totally forget about me.  Sometimes I even forget to eat.  C’mon now, that’s just wrong.  I know that I need to make some changes to lead a more healthy and positive lifestyle.  Hey, what can I say, I’m a work in progress.  I’d like to start by incorporating meditation into my daily routine.  My life isn’t hectic per se, but some days the dog and baby are crying in unison, my husband can’t find his wallet before work, the eggs are burning on the stove and I very well may have put my undies on inside out.  Every time I see people meditating I think of how peaceful they must feel and how I could use some of that peace in my life.

What is meditation?

There isn’t a consensus as to the definition of meditation, however many sources state that meditation is an awareness, a process to calm our minds; a training of the mind to develop clarity and concentration.  Meditation can be connected to religion, spirituality or simply used as a mindfulness practice.

So here are the basics of meditation:

  1. Find a quiet place.
  2. Get comfortable.  It doesn’t matter if you are lying on the floor surrounded by Legos or sitting in your car during your lunch break; clasping your hands or resting them at your sides.
  3. Close your eyes.
  4. Try to clear your mind.  I know this one is difficult, but it will get better with practice.

Sounds simple enough right?  Ok, now join me for a short introduction to guided meditation.  Please comment below and let me know about your experience!