Clear Your Head

clearyourheadEver have one of those moments hours where there are so many thoughts running through your head? Yea, me too. This can be a debilitating experience…not sure what thought to tackle next…when is the project due…need to answer emails…return phone calls…finish to-do list. If I’m not careful…this process can quickly turn to stress and then a headache…not fun!

Last year I read Arianna Huffington’s book, Thrive, and it was eye opening.  The book is full of great information about work/life balance, getting enough sleep and why there is more to life than work.  In the book she also talks a lot about meditation.  The idea of meditation wasn’t new to me but I’d never really tried meditating.

I had plenty of excuses when I thought about meditating…I can’t sit still, I can’t quiet my mind, I can’t sit comfortably…I don’t know how to start.  So, I just didn’t do it.

Determined to try, earlier this year, I tried the app, Insight Timer, to help me meditate.  It’s a good app and has a lot of different meditators to practice with and learn from.  I would put in my earbuds and do my best to listen to the instructor and meditate. There’s one I particularly love which is called “Meditation on Gratitude” by Adam Dacey.  Adam does a great job leading this meditation and I really liked that I could focus on gratitude while meditating.

A month ago, I got a free trial of Headspace in my FabFitFun Box.  I LOVE this site so much and the meditations are amazing.  Plus, there’s a schedule to follow which really keeps me on track with meditating.  The schedule starts with 10 days of 10 minutes of mediating (we all have 10 minutes, right?).  Plus there are really fun short videos to help you learn how to meditate, including ways to clear your head and not feel guilty about thoughts entering your mind during mediation.  Andy leads the meditations every day and he’s so good…you need a great voice if you are going to lead meditations and his voice is amazing! I feel like Andy and I are friends and he really wants me to get really good at meditating…so I’m trying.

I’m on my 10th session and I feel like I am starting to really understand and get better at meditating…which is helping me clear my head daily.  Most importantly, it’s 10 minutes a day where I take time for myself to breathe deeply and take a digital break.  I read this article today about what technology is doing to our bodies…what are we doing people??

I hope if you have thought about meditating you will give Insight Timer or Headspace a try…guided meditations are really helpful.  Don’t beat yourself up if you can’t still your mind on the first few tries…it takes practice…but don’t give up.  Some days I knock it out of the park and really meditate and some days I can’t stop thinking about work or random ideas.  It’s ok…Andy says it’s ok to let the mind wander…just gently bring it back to the breath.

Have you tried meditation? Would love to hear about your experiences!

What I Am Reading-August

thrive-book-coverLately, I have been obsessing about simplifying my life, slowing down and being more intentional.  My good friend, Shelly Walters, told me about this book and I am so glad. Huffington totally gets it and she is sharing her experiences of running full speed ahead in the rat race and then slowing down and taking a new approach to her life.  I can’t put this book down and I feel like I am either dog-earing every page or highlighting a lot of text.

If you feel like your work life or personal life needs an adjustment, I think you will really like this book.  It makes me think of Taco Bell’s famous marekting campaign, “Fourth Meal.” Huffington introduces us to the Third Metric of success and it’s powerful stuff.

 

From Amazon: In this deeply personal book, Arianna talks candidly about her own challenges with managing time and prioritizing the demands of a career and raising two daughters — of juggling business deadlines and family crises, a harried dance that led to her collapse and to her “aha moment.” Drawing on the latest groundbreaking research and scientific findings in the fields of psychology, sports, sleep, and physiology that show the profound and transformative effects of meditation, mindfulness, unplugging, and giving, Arianna shows us the way to a revolution in our culture, our thinking, our workplace, and our lives.

From the book:

My heart is at ease knowing that what was meant for me will never miss me, and that what misses me was never meant for me. Imam Al-Shafi’i (18th century Muslim jurist)