One of the things I did this spring was to explore a 21-day on-line meditation podcast (sponsored by Oprah and Deepak Chopra). For me this was both something new and something out of my comfort zone. I’ve never done podcasts (don’t judge my tech-phobia), nor had I really tried meditation. Savasana in yoga or daily journaling is the closest I’ve come to meditative activity.
This 21-day journey was about finding lightness, energy, and vitality and shedding heaviness, stress, shackles, old unfulfilling habits, and weight. Shedding the old allows space for the new. While I am not sure this activity created a desire to continue daily mediation, it did validate many aspects of transformation I have been working on the past 3 years in retirement transition – practicing positivity, emotional awareness, changing negative beliefs, owning your choices, an attitude of gratitude. I came away with a renewed sense of personal power in my transition, some new goals, and a new affirmation.
Here’s some of my take-aways from this 21-day meditation journey:
Stop playing the same negative tapes. There were many days the discussion was about expanding awareness. Freedom from old habits was about breaking the pattern of unconscious behaviors and untrue thoughts by first being mindful/aware of them. Alter your mindset to shift your life.
- Be aware of the negative emotion (anxiety, resentment, dissatisfaction, self-doubt, irritation, frustration, procrastination/inertia, fear), but do not let it define you.
- Be aware of what you are really hungry for? Connection? Stimulation? Hydration?
It made me ask myself: What are the negative thought patterns that move me towards unconscious snacking? Continued lack of daily movement? Inertia on engaging in some activities on my possibilities list?
Habits were conditioned through the years, but were in fact created by you. Move from unconscious habit to conscious behaviors (awareness) and then modify your attitudes and beliefs to impact your behaviors and habits. What benefit do you gain by adhering to these (old) habits?
- I started to outline my negative beliefs… I’m not a good friend, I’m not physically able to do things, I’m not motivated enough to create the life I want, I’ll do it someday, I don’t belong, I’m not able to (fill in the blank), I’m not good enough at (fill in the blank).
- If I switch beliefs, will I choose new behaviors? Here goes: I have a good circle of friends. I am physically able to do yoga, Zumba, walk 5 miles, SUP. I get compliments on my blogging. I am living the life I want. I am activating my vision every day.
Since Self-Acceptance is an area I am focusing on this year, the many days of discussion here were very helpful. Positive acceptance is not denial of your “bad parts”; it’s not being defensive because you’re not something else. It is “You be you”.
- Stop being hard on yourself. No comparison desperation. No societal expectations. No waiting for external validation. These actions give away your power.
- Find fulfillment in being yourself, your authentic self. Not good self and bad self, but one whole self. What you really want, what you really feel. I release the burden to be good, “perfect”, what others expect. My true supporters will accept anything I do that is true to me.
Today is someday. Don’t wait for someday. Don’t push happiness off into (an uncertain) future. Life unfolds day by day. You write your life story by the choices you make everyday.
- I choose who I want to be with the actions I take. Every day I make choices to align my thoughts, words, and actions with my values to become who I was meant to be and live the life I want to live.
- Wellness is a balance of the physical, mental and spiritual – all interconnected into a seamless whole. Life is about a healthy diet, daily movement, stress management, strong connections with others, and having an attitude of gratitude.
- Make daily choices. Today I will cook more healthy and drink more water Today, I will spend time with people who emanate positive energy. Today I will set up a walk & talk or a foodie-friends dinners. Today I will start the plan for Iceland, Syracuse, and our cross-country trip.
I need to use the power of my mind (awareness) to release old burdens, limiting beliefs, and transform old habits. My true self emerges in my path forward – free of self-criticism; growing, not just existing; making choices aligned to my (new) beliefs. I accept that where I am right now is where I need to be right now. I am enough. I am not the person I used to be; I am becoming the person I want to be. I am living the life I envision, experiencing the things I value, doing things that lift me up (SOAR). I am open to opportunity and spontaneity. I am filling my unique place in the Universe.
While this 21-day meditation journey did not convert me to being a daily meditator, I would definitely do another session like this as it was immensely empowering.
Are you a daily meditator?
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