A photograph on the wall at my doctor’s office.
It was part of my annual exam.
A simple question that followed the typical discussion about my anxiety and depression and how I am doing with managing my moods.
“Do you meditate regularly?” she asked.
I wanted to jump in and say, “Oh yes, of course I do,” but before answering I mentally scanned the previous months.
“Not exactly regularly,” I said. “But I do meditate. Er…I mean I know how to meditate and I have taught others how to meditate and I’m very mindful in my day to day life but ummm…I’ve been busy…” my voice trailed off.
I knew where this conversation was going. And I knew I needed to face the truth. I have not been practicing what I teach. I’ve let busy slide in and tucked my yoga mat and my meditation cushion away, waiting for the perfect circumstances to arrive so I could pull them back out.
“You really should be meditating daily,” she said. “Just 20 minutes each day is enough to tell the nervous system that it is safe to relax, which has a ripple effect on all the body’s systems.”
I took my scripts for various blood work and my first mammogram (I just entered my 40s last month!), but it was the prescription for meditation that really stuck with me.
In the coming days, I made an effort, not to sit for 20 minutes, but to pause for micro-meditations throughout my day, to catch myself reaching for my cell phone to fill a void with Facebook or Instagram. I reminded myself that it is the breath that leads me into a meditative state and revisited my own guided meditations on Three Deep Breaths.
Slowly, I am finding my way back to my seat, remembering how good it feels to commune with my own quiet, inner knowing.
Slowly, I begin (again).
How about you? Do you meditate regularly? Tell us about your experience with meditation (or your hesitation to try it) in the comments. Let’s inspire each other!