Guilty as Charged

By Cindi Lee – Yoga Instructor
Contributor’s website: Cindi Lee Yoga

Where or where has my meditation practice gone? I am going to keep this article short and sweet because I believe we would all benefit from having a consistent meditation practice instead of reading about how important it is to meditate. I can be just as guilty as any other yogi. Occasionally I find myself taking the time to practice yoga while not creating the time and space to meditate.

These past few months for me have been exhilarating, challenging, and absolutely wonderful! I had the opportunity to teach yoga for a Yoga Surf Retreat with Via Yoga, in Mexico. Then when I got back to LA less than a week later my brother came to visit from Finland for a week. Plus my parents came to visit for a month in May. I forgot to mention I rented my parents an unfurnished apartment that I fully furnished, what was I thinking? It was all fantastic and at times I naturally felt overwhelmed. I felt responsible for a lot of people’s happiness and good times. Which means in the midst of everything I ultimately had to make sure to take responsibility for myself. It is easy to practice yoga, get the body moving, breath flowing, calm the mind, and then run out into the streets of LA and get back into a tizzy shortly thereafter.

Much of this tizzy would be decreased and perhaps eliminated if we also made time to meditate. For me, it is best to meditate after a dynamic yoga practice. Then my mind is still and my body is open to listen and receive without judgement.

Start with something incredibly easy, like a one minute silent meditation. You’d be surprised of how one minute of tuning into yourself can change the course of your day. Or practice a guided meditation with music. Eventually I believe it is best to practice a silent meditation where you are confronted to deal with just yourself and your thoughts that surface. Most importantly, practice a meditation that works best for you and your needs.

In the beginning you will probably want to get up every five seconds. I remember breaking a meditation to make phone calls and even to wash the dirty dishes in the sink. A meditation practice is just like anything, the more you do it, the easier it gets. After a consistent meditation practice for one week, I start to feel my brain literally sinking into my gut. I am getting out of my head and into my belly. In ancient healing, the gut is known to be the brain of the body. Peace starts with the stomach. Can you recall the saying, “Listen to your gut?” Mediation forces us to get out of our intellectual mind, which we use throughout the majority of our day, and into our gut.
Lets begin. Sit in a comfortable seat. Feel free to prop yourself up on a blanket or bolster. I like to first place my hands on my lower belly to encourage my to naturally sink deeper. Then, place hands on your knees (palms up or down), hands in prayer at the heart, or the Taoist knot resting one palm in the other below your belly button. There are a variety of hand mudras, feel free to get creative. Close your eyes and relax your eyelids. Take 5 deep breaths, there you go, you meditated for a minute. Keep adding on one minute at a time so meditating is a reachable goal for you on a daily basis.

Cheers to being mentally tizzy free!

Yoga Tip:
To help facilitate your tizzy free mind, it is nice to set up a little space in your home dedicated to meditation so every time you pass this space, it reminds you to practice. However, a short meditation can be done in your parked car, at your desk, and outside in nature. The important part is to do it. Reconnect to what is truly important my taping into your true self.

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Contributor’s website: Cindi Lee Yoga

Image Credits: Photos taken by Alex Vasilescu

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