|Water or Wheels|
When I am feeling too pensive for my own good, or too distracted, or too bound up in my daily lists of “have to do” and “need to do” and “why haven’t you put away the Christmas decorations yet, you ridiculous procrastinator?!” I usually do one of two things. The first option is to take a shower.
I can’t quite explain the magic of a shower when my brain is all a-glitch with obligations. Maybe it is just the act of intentionally shutting myself away from the input of information. It’s just me and the steam and hot water raining on my head. Maybe it is accidental aromatherapy with my fancy handmade soaps or that “I found it on clearance!” expensive shampoo. Maybe the simple exercise of getting clean is washing away a layer of existential grit I’ve been carrying around with me too long, blurring my clarity of mind and chafing my inner drive for completion. Maybe I’m resetting my mind with nostalgia by indulging in a dollop of Noxzema for a five-minute face mask. At any rate, when I am done, I am more clear-headed and ready to pick up where I left off.
The second option is one I take when I have the luxury of more than 20 minutes in the shower. And that is to go for a drive. I know it’s not something everyone can do or even something everyone likes, but for me, nothing is quite as cathartic as hitting some back roads for an excursion to nowhere. If I am really angry or upset, I often drive in silence, focused on the road. Eventually, I will end up either having a good loud imaginary fight with someone who isn’t there, or crying. Letting those emotions out gives me a chance to release my feelings and work through whatever the problem is. Maybe they fly out of the windows and into the wind, because by the time I am ready to turn toward home again, I feel better.
If I was just overwhelmed, spending a break in the car with loud music on the radio, singing along, sunroof open, indulging in a gas station fountain drink and a bag of chips is this different kind of mind reset. It’s a little blast of joy. I get a change of scenery, a chance to not think about anything in particular, a little snack, and a dash of music therapy. Maybe there is something, too, about absorbing the kinetic energy of a moving car that is re-energizing to my brain, but by the time I get home, it’s like I left my worries on the road.
If you need a little brain reset and can take a shower or go for a drive…go do it! Indulge in taking time for yourself. Take those deep breaths while you are at it, give yourself a good talking to. Have the imaginary fight or cry if you need to. But if you want to try to capture the same clarity of mind when you can’t just skip off to the shower or head out for a Sunday drive, try these meditation options.
Find a comfortable seat. Close your eyes, relax your face, and drop your shoulders. Breathe deeply, holding it for five counts, then release. Repeat at least three times.
Choose now which you want: water or wheels?
If you choose water, I want you to imagine using each of your senses. First, imagine yourself in a lovely bathroom. The tile is your favorite color, the soap is your favorite scent, the lighting is how you like it, and everything you might want in the shower is waiting for you. The water is already the perfect temperature, and you step in under the flow. Feel the water on your head, on your back, and on your face. What does it sound like? How does your favorite smell make you feel? Imagine massaging your scalp with the best shampoo, releasing the tension you hold above your forehead, around your ears, and at the nape of your neck. Feel the warmth of the water relaxing your muscles. Imagine yourself washing away all the grime from the day, leaving your skin feeling clean and fresh. Maybe you’d also like a face mask or some body oil while you’re in there. Whatever makes you feel pampered, give yourself that gift. Enjoy these sensations, as long as you like. Consider the following concepts:
I am wonderfully made.
My thoughts are clear, and my mind is at peace.
I deserve to take care of myself.
If you choose wheels, I also want you to imagine with each of your senses. First, imagine yourself in your favorite car, any car. It is your favorite color, and it smells just how you imagined it would. Close the door, buckle your seatbelt, and start the engine. Feel your fingers gripping the steering wheel, your feet on the pedals. The radio is playing your favorite song. Do you want the windows down or the sunroof open? As you begin to drive, imagine you are heading out on a good, wide road toward the gently rolling hills just past town. The weather is good, the air is fresh, and as you drive, you feel your body relax in the seat. The stress of the day just evaporates and is replaced with a joyful energy. If you want to sing, sing! If you want to stop for snacks, be sure to buy your favorites! The flavors explode in your mouth and make you feel rejuvenated. As you pass the scenery, feel your worries leaving your mind. This break is satisfying by changing your perspective and giving you access to wide open spaces. If there is something you need to say to yourself or someone else, go ahead and say it here. When you feel ready to return to where you started, send out a thank you to the rolling hills, and let your worries stay there. Consider the following concepts:
I am free to make changes that honor my heart.
I have the ability to choose my own path.
I am allowed to experience joy.
I hope these meditations give you a little slice of bliss this week.
As always, friends,
INSPIRATIONS THIS WEEK
We’re feeling inspired by these incredible and thought provoking pieces:
- 1,400-year-old mural of 2-faced men unearthed in Peru may allude to ‘cosmic realms’Archaeologists have discovered two 1,400-year-old murals of two-faced men within a ceremonial hall that belonged to the Moche culture of Peru.
- Spacesuit for NASA’s Artemis III Moon Surface Mission DebutsBuilding on NASA’s years of research and expertise, Axiom’s next generation spacesuits will not only enable the first woman to walk on the Moon, but they will also open opportunities for more people to explore and conduct science on the Moon than ever before
- OpenAI’s GPT-4 aced all of its exams – except for theseIts parents must be so proud.
That’s all for today, y’all – remember, taking time to focus on you is an act of love.
We hope you found this helpful – don’t hesitate to reply with any feedback on how we can improve future Mindful Moments! We can’t wait to hear from you.
See you next time!
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