Just Sit There

Martha McCormickMindfulness & Movement1 Comment

Next Step Adventure is offering “Be the Change,” a loosely connected series of Thursday evening dinner discussions  at Christopher’s Restaurant beginning January 2, 2014 with “Be the Change in Your Body.” Register here for one event at $30 or register and prepay for all five events for just $125 ($25 discount).

Our February 27 session will focus on mindfulness. The more formal aspect of mindfulness is meditation. To be honest, I do better in moving meditation.

Walking, swimming and art are three of my favorites. In Sweat Your Prayers, the late Gabrielle Roth reflects on her nearly forty years of teaching personal and spiritual development.

Since I’ve been practicing yoga, seated meditation comes easier to me. Breath is one key. Observing your breath leads to managing it, then moving with it. Finally in savasana, we let our breath breathe us.

I’m excited to be making some progress in seated meditation–I can now sit comfortably for 20 minutes or so, without getting squirmy or falling asleep. Quite an improvement. So what?

So, it turns out meditation not only helps us handle stress but actually changes our brains and our bodies. As I age, I become more and more committed to maintaining my mobility, both physical and mental. My mom spent the last three years of her life literally vegging out in front of Animal Planet.

At her graveside service, I imagined God requiring a certain amount of stillness. Because she never stopped working, being busy, she had to make her quota all at one time. I plan to get my sitting done in a less painful way.

I just learned from Jill Bolte Taylor’s My Stroke of Insight that staying in the present moment happens in the right side of the brain. “We are the life force power of the universe.” That’s what this neuroanatomist learned from having a major stroke in the left hemisphere of her brain. She believes that through focusing in the right hemisphere of our brains, we can project peaceful energy into the world. Talk about an idea worth sharing!

We’ll touch on all of these aspects of mindfulness, and some others as well on February 27 at the “Be the Change” dinner discussion. We’ll focus the discussion on being fully present in life through meditation, putzing, art and yoga. Whether through formal or everyday practice, mindfulness improves mental health.

One Comment on “Just Sit There”

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