7 tips for establishing your meditation practice.

I find we live much of life on automatic pilot.

inspiring

inspiring

We know more joy when we  1. State specifically what we want.

   2.Constantly focus on it.

3. Take action to make it happen.

Tip 1  Be realistic in your expectations. Training or taming the  “mad monkey mind” is a skill to develop over a lifetime. If you are new to this take your time, enjoy the newness of the journey. Andy Puddicombe says”If expectations are too high then you may well feel disappointed and demotivated at some stage. So just take one day at a time.”

Tip 2   Meditate first thing in the morning if you can. It will ensure it gets done, and is a great way to start each day. Starting fresh each morning enables us to see the day clearly  and puts things into perspective.

Tip 3  One teacher put it this way.”If you choose to do it at another time of day, prioritize it. This means putting it in the diary and committing to it in the same way you would to any other kind of meeting or event in your week. Just sit for   10 minutes  remember nothing is more important than the health of your mind.”

Tip 4 Think “same time, same place.” That’s why so many people benefit from a weekly class. As you are driving to class the mind is already shedding the day and preparing you for meditation. For daily practice create  a corner or use the same chair or matt, only for meditation.Toby advises “Try to create a conducive environment in which you can immediately relax into and make it part of your daily routine.”

Tip 5  You may find it useful to add meditation to your  pre existing daily routine.   Think “morning walk  and then meditation,” or perhaps “shower and then meditation.” Thus we integrate the practice into a well-established routine that already exists.

Tip 6 Be flexible, no matter what. If you intend to train the mind for the rest of your life, you can be sure that there will be days when your routine is thrown out of shape. Don’t let that be an excuse to skip a day, just do it later instead. It is always better to sit for a short while than not at all, even if it is only a minute.

Tip 7  Avoid judging your meditation. It is tempting to think you are “good” or “bad” at meditation. In truth, there is no such thing. There is only distraction or non-distraction.Take the big picture approach it is for the health for your life.

Toby says”If you tell yourself you are bad at something you will lose all motivation and are unlikely to do it. If you understand the purpose, this will never be a problem.”

Always reflect on the benefits of meditation at the end of the session. Notice how you feel, physically, mentally and emotionally. The more you establish the connection between training the mind and feeling better, clearer, or calmer, the easier it becomes to sit down and practice each day.

My Yoga Teacher yoga Shanti said   “When thoughts and actions become destructive, it is your responsibility to alter or abort them and institute new habits as the foundation for a freer, happier life. Steady efforts always bring results. Exert your power, improve how you think and intetract in the world. The force is always with you.”Shantiyoga.com

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Eat,Pray, Love and more – Meditator’s diet 2

The fire had burnt out and the air was rapidly cooling , so we agreed it would be a good night to go early to bed. And if the phone rings we will not answer it the fellow announced.

Loose body awareness by gazing into the flame.

Loose body awareness by gazing into the flame.

I had just drifted to sleep when I heard him stagger from bed and after awhile “I will bring Lorraine to the phone.” I listened, bundled in a blanket, to the call no one wants to make or receive.

I wish to tell you some news as Donald( name changed)is a good friend of yours.He  has had a brain tumour removed.

I could tell by her breathing that my girlfriend was holding tight to stop the tears and be able to deliver her message about her husband.

Starry sky

Starry sky

We are walking in nature, I am crying a lot.”- Good tears release endorphins which help you to manage the extra stessors.

The next phone call

“We need to change our diet. No white flour and no white sugar.  no meat. Oh dear I remember those wonderful German pastries.” Donald is still cooking and seems not to worry about the future Chemo therapy and Radiation that he will receive daily for the next six weeks

” I am coping by seeing a psychologist and having massages. Did I believe in Energy healing?” The questions tumble out each time we Skype.

The energetics of our body. painting by Lorraine Willcock

The energetics of our body. painting by Lorraine Willcock

Donald is now added to my healing meditation I send daily to the world

Remember that International best seller Eat , Pray , Love well I’ve added a few.

Pray, keep faith and smile!
Prayer is the best form of reassurance and support to keep you anxiety-free. over backward  it is guaranteed to bring you peace.

Developing habits of daily prayer, chanting or singing bhajans (devotional songs)

Just sing It improves breathing and you feel so much better. fills you with positive energy and also helps still the mind. They also instill a sense of deep faith that all happens for the best and that there is a higher divine power that takes care of all life forms. Moreover, make a conscious effort to smile more and more. It will instill confidence, calmness and positivity instantaneously. Try it out right now!

Think about what you can do for others.
When we constantly remain stuck in ‘me and mine’, it makes room for stress and anxiety. Our world shrinks and we become possessive. Rather, shift your attention to how you can be of some use to others around you. This way of thinking will energise you and bring you much joy.

And yes Know the impermanence of the world.
When this realisation acknowledges that everything around us is temporary and will change, we become relaxed and settled from within. A feeling of ‘this too shall pass arises in us and frees us from anxiety.” Meditation will help you settle into this feeling.The art of living.com

and as you mentioned food

Here are 10 foods you could add into your diet that can help improve your mind/ body health.By Hayley Hobson • Originally published on Mind Body Green.

published on thefoodrevolutionnetwork.com Ocean Robbins

1. Leafy greens. Some ideas: kale, spinach, collard and mustard greens. These foods are high in folate and B9, which improve cognition and reduce depression.

2. Cruciferous vegetables. Broccoli, cauliflower, bok choy, brussels sprouts and kale contain folate and have cartenoids that lower homo-cysteine (an amino acid linked with cognitive impairment).

3. Beans and legumes. These foods contain more folate, iron, magensium and potassium that can help with general body function and neuron firing. They also contain choline, a B vitamin that boosts acetylcholine (a neuro transmitter critical for brain function).

4. Whole grains. Good bets include quinoa, kammut and gluten-free oats (not bread and cereal)

5. Berries and cherries. These fruits contain anthocyanin that protects the brain from further damage caused by free radicals. They also have anti-inflammatory properties and contain antioxidants and lots of vitamin C and E.

6. Pumpkin, squash, asparagus, tomatoes, carrots and beets. These vegetables, if not overcooked, contain vitamin A, folate and iron that help with cognition.

7. Omega 3s. People whose diets contain daily omega 3s have been shown to have 26% less risk of having brain lesions that cause dementia compared with those who do not. These fatty acids help the brain to stay in top shape. You can get your omega fatty acids from fish, flax seeds, olive oil (not safflower) or by taking a good quality omega 3 supplement.

8. Almonds, cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts, peanuts and pecans. All of these nuts contain omega-3s and omega-6s, vitamin E, folate, vitamin B6 and magnesium.

9. Sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds. These seeds contain zinc, choline and vitamin E.

10. Cinnamon, sage, tumeric and cumin. Theses spices can all help to break up brain plaque and reduce inflammation of the brain which can cause memory issues. In addition to eating the foods listed above, you’ll want to decrease the risk of illnesses that can make your brain age such as obesity, heart disease, diabetes and hypertension.

Other things to avoid are the toxins in your food, water, soil and environment, unnecessary stress, caffeine, sugar, drugs, alcohol and sugar.

Encourage healthy decisions, conscientiousness, positive peer groups, a clean environment, exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, 8 hours of sleep, stress management and gratitude. Saying thank you everyday for the things you have. Friends , family an excellent medical facility. sun on your shoulders, starlight.

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Living with a brain tumour – Meditation.

Dear Helga after our last talk  I have been thinking of ways to help.Though your husband has been diagnosed with  a brain tumour, I feel our  experiences may be of some help to you.

When my Husband was first diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, I felt so very alone.

God's view _ serenity ,alone with the sea waves and breeze, silent illumination.

God’s view _ serenity ,alone with the sea waves and breeze, silent illumination.

In some ways we were already exhausted from moving from Dr to Dr until the diagnosis was finally made.Then we needed  to tell friends and family. In fact I initially denied the diagnosis and asked that we tell no-one  Coming to terms with it is difficult, your life will now be fully occupied by the dis-ease and healing of it. So I am hoping that you would take some of my experience to help you on your journey. This letter is really all about you and this is something you need to learn. And you absolutely must prioritise things.Or life will become a whirlwind  the rush and noise and constancy of medications timed and Drs visited, the missed sleep the change of diet, you must find time for yourself. In fact it may help if you to write a list of your favourite things example. Riding your bike, going to a movie, having coffee and cake with friends, reading a  book in a sunlit corner.

These are the first things that’ll disappear in your life. Most carers suffer burnout, because their job is now 24 hours, waking, sleeping  tearing at your heart space so taking time for yourself is imperative. So here are a few suggestions I offer with love.

tip# 1 Never feel guilty when you take care of yourself.  people will forget that as the care giver you are living the same life as the brain tumour patient. It is you who must find the energy to answer the phone calls from friends, to prepare the meals to do the washing keep house etc so you too are going through a very tough time. Do I do not feel guilty asking for help.

tip#2   When you feel that you will explode go for a walk..

I can remember I had washed and ironed full basket of washing. I was folding the last piece when my husband called from the bed he began to lecture me on something as I have carried the washing basket into the bedroom with me I then took each piece and threw it at him. He sat draped in freshly ironed clothes and I  then realised that  I would have to do it all over again . Lack of sleep and lack of care for myself had ended up in an explosion of temper.

Leading me to tip# 3    Accept help.

Yes this is a big one, I suspect it’s based on the fact that we feel we must protect our loved one. Sheild them from the world. Maybe we think no one can care for them as well as we do. Please remember that your loved one also needs variety, diversion away from doctors and medical clinics. Wouldn’t it be nice if they had a friend come to read to them,  Someone to share cooking a meal. Someone bringing  things magazines or books from the library to them. And during this time you could have a moment for a massage A walk the sunlight or simply digging your garden..

tip#4 Keep  your friends close. Some will not want to know the news, Because they do not know how to handle the news. But from others you’ll find a rare and wondrous quality of support and love. They will willingly find ways to make your life easier, They will listen to your moments of anger frustration and despair. And it is fine to share with them remember, that they love you, they are your friends.

tip#5   Sleep glorious sleep. Borrow relaxation on meditation takes from your library purchase them.Talk to a local yoga/meditation  teacher. Sleep is a healing time for you and your husband. My experience was that I woke often just to check if he was breathing. As I still continued working, I found that my temper was harder to control, I was very teary and had little patience. In fact I had labelled myself the virgin nurse.

I turned back to my meditation  I sought help from my yoga teacher. I invited my mother to drive my husband to some appointments. She was delighted to help. And I began sleeping again.

tip#6    Establish a habit early of encouraging your loved one time in the day to lie on the couch or rest in a chair or on the bed. Often they feel as if they too must continue as if life were normal. Rest is vital to healing.

Leading to the next tip

tip #7

Be prepared to say no. You may have to deny access to friends and family during treatment. Sometimes you are the the shield against the outside world. I found many people phone after they had their evening meal.  I would remove the phone from the hook. Because sometimes  the only thing that matters is what the patient needs and wants. Perhaps  for the first time in their life, they have time to consider what they want.

tip#8 Before your house becomes a prison,

plan things you can do to do as special outings. Something simple you can both enjoy, on  a regular basis. Even if it’s having a coffee on the way home from the treatment centre. Initially the patient may rebel, but soon he will appreciate seeing different scenery and  meeting different people. Sitting at an outdoor table and observing passing strangers can be a source of silencing the anxious mind.If he is not well enough to meet with friends, for a simple meal. Make sure that you have time for you, even just 30 minutes can renew your spirit and your energy. Try to find time in nature this is healing.

tip#9  If you can afford it buy flowers for your home. Energetically they clear the environment, and brighten your spirit. Your loved one  may appreciate the splashes of colour in which sometimes becomes a grey world. Can you organise friends and family to drive the patient to the hospital treatment? As this is a daily occurrence A roster could be drawn up and  shared among friends, neighbours and family. Giving you time to catch up on home housework or maybe just a time to sit and meditate.

floral blessings

tip#10. I also suggest that you do not go down the path of questioning why.

Bad things happen to good people.  Why  has this happened to us? Why has this happened to him? And when friends or family wish to speak of “why is a good man suffering?” This is not fair…… Ask them not to speak like that. Tell them  you find it hurtful.  You will not accept negative statements in your life now.

In the worst and darkest moment there is always something that is bright and beautiful. If it gives you time to contemplate your life instead of rushing and running and working on autopilot. Is this not a gift in itself?  Meditation gives you a big picture it puts perspective back into a life, that  has   suddenly been upended. When you feel that the carpet has been pulled out from beneath your feet. Meditation can give you a sense of once more being grounded. Finally, right now know that you are  needed, you are being valued, and know that you walk the journey with your loved one, remaining separate. It allows you to remain whole and gives them the space to understand that they are loving and loved even in their present state.

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International day of Yoga

International day of Yoga.

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International day of Yoga

The United Nations has declared that June 21 will be celebrated every year as International Yoga Day. The resolution was co-sponsored by 177 of the 193 member nations, and was so popular that it did not have to go for a vote and was adopted by an acclamation.

Peace in every breath

The sun never sets on Yoga.

The sun never sets on Yoga

The sun never sets on Yoga From the art of living.com

Think of all of the money and energy that goes into guns and war, the energy of reporters flying around the world, governments meeting , discussing.  The number of presses rolling reporting on violence domestic and international. Now imagine  a group of people and a  matt. The energy that is created can be used to heal , falling like balm on the world. join us and the millions of others world wide who wish peace for all.

Leading to the occasion of International Day of Yoga on 21st June 2015.

The universality and the timelessness of yoga found resonance when yoga enthusiasts from around 100 cities rose with the sun and rolled out their mats in front of historic locations to practice yoga as a prelude to the International Yoga Day (June 21st).

“Just like the Sun, Yoga is age-old and yet ever-new. It is a holistic way of life that integrates all elements to make a prayerful discipline uniting the body, mind and soul”, shares Kamlesh Barwal, Global Head, The Art of Living Yoga.

Titled, ‘Sun Never Sets on Yoga’ this magnificent event spanning five continents witnessed the world literally wake up to yoga. Setting pace from the land of the rising sun, Japan to Budapest to St Petersburg to London to New York to Rio De Janerio, the event saw enthusiasts flocking unique and historic locations in Istanbul, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Sydney and Auckland among others. Many cities in Russia, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Canada, Lithuania Cambodia, the UAE, Oman, Turkey, Indonesia also followed the sun and joined in hallmarking the comprehensiveness of this ancient technique.

The historic Taj Mahal at Agra and the grand Vishalakshi Mantap at The Art of living International Centre in Bengaluru also saw this event in India.

Allaying any fear that yogic practices leads one away from his or her religion, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, founder of the Art of Living says, “Like eating pizza or chowmein doesn’t make one Italian or Chinese, doing yoga isn’t going to make one Indian or Hindu. When we accept cuisines, fashion, music and technologies from every part of the world as a sign of progressive thinking, why not wisdom of yoga from India.” He adds, “Yoga has today become synonymous with relaxation, happiness, or a creative mind. The world is embracing it as a skill to enhance the quality of life.”

Indians bend over backwards for peace
The Australian (blog)
“Yoga is the soft power of India and through that soft power the whole world can become one global village and violence can be done away with,” Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj said. “This is a good beginning to take the whole world on the path of peace.”.

Vancouver _ Busy Vancouver bridge to close for hours on International Yoga day.

“Spandex _ clad Yogis roll out their mats and close Vancouver’s busy Burrard Street bridge for an event organisers hope will be the largest yoga celebration outside India.

“Om the Bridge” will block the major thoroughfare through the city for seven hours on June 21.

The provence and other supporters, including local companies and the cities of Surrey and Vancouver are hoping the event will be the largest International Day of Yoga celebrati

Personally I am planning something a lot more low key, depending on the weather I may take my yoga mat to the beach or you are welcome to  celebrate the first international Yoga Day  by downloading my free App.

Simply go into Google playstore   play.google.com

on right side bar Apps

type in yogameditation one word and click on

Lorraines yogameditation App

Lorraines yogameditation App

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Copper Plate Etching Process

“Etching, a form of intaglio,whereby The design is cut, scratched, or etched into the printing surface or plate, which can be copper, zinc, aluminum, magnesium, plastics, or even coated paper.” Encyclopedia Britannica

These photos were taken during a workshop by printmaker Frances Luke for the Eurobodalla River of Art  Moruya New South Wales. Australia.

Conte crayon

Conte crayon

Etching is a printmaking technique developed well over 500 years ago. An etching is made by using acid, we used Feccic chloride, ( please wear a mask when using this) or a salt to bite into the surface of a flat metal plate, in our class copper. “The longer the plate bites, the deeper the bite is, and the darker the mark. Most other printmaking techniques, such as relief (linoleum block, woodblock) and silkscreen, only produce one tonal value per plate, but with etching, many values from the lightest grey to the darkest black and many different types of marks can be created on one plate.”  http://www.julialuceycom

How to design into copper  plates:

We  used a combination of hardground (line) etching and aquatint, even though the workshop was really only to be on hard line etching. (Most printers love aquatint because it   creates a plate that adds the richness  of different grey tones and can create almost a painterly line.)

Bitumen – Hardground:

As the copper plate is oiled lightly, this needs to be cleaned,using 1000 grade wet and dry sandpaper, just moist. and or gumption ( cleaning product.)

To create a hardground line etching, we painted a thin layer of  bitumen on to the cleaned copper plate. Heated to distribute evenly.

Warm copper

Warm copper

This is the resist- to stop the acid biting into the copper plate.  We  used an etching tool/ needle to draw our image, exposing the plate below the hardground.

If you are uncomfortable drawing straight on to your plate, draw your image first on tracing or kitchen paper. Our teacher Francis suggested we use the technique of grinding a conte, sanguine, finely and dusting the back of the paper with the compressed chalk.  Rub hard into paper.Tape this to the copper plate so it won’t move. Transfer image with h or hb pencil. Press lightly so as not to remove bitumen.

Stick “Contact ” on back, before immersing in bath, to protect copper plate. Add a small amount of blu -tack to each  corner of the plate, this keeps it of the bottom of the bath.

Blue Tack on back of  plate

Blue Tack on back of plate

Put the plate in a tray of acid.We used Ferric Chloride to make the  lines bite deep.

A 50/ 50 mix of Ferric chloride and demineralised water. Always add ferric chloride  to water. Our teacher added two drops of ascorbic acid to reduce the amount of residue.

In Ferric chloride bath

In Ferric chloride bath

We left the copper plate in for 20 minutes. ( Tilting bath now and then to check solution washes over plate.moving the residue around.) This can vary as to how deep you want your design lines to bite. Then wash solution off in water. Working outside because of the fumes , we ’tissue d” off the bitumen with turpentine, and some baby oil to remove last of residue. Try not to touch copper as the grease in your fingers will etch into plate.

Printing:

Now that we have etched the plate we can print it. Firstly we needed to bevel the edges of the plate so that they do not slice through  paper (or worse the etching blanket). Use a file and downward pressure. Slide the plate between paper to keep finger prints off plate.

File edge to bevel

File edge to bevel

Now we can apply ink. Some use a wide flexible plastic pallet knife, but a cancelled credit  card works too, to apply a thin  layer of ink over the whole plate.

Thin layer of ink over all plate

Thin layer of ink over all plate

We used a fabric called tarlatan,  a scrim similar to cheese cloth. this arrives full of sizing, which will scratch your plate. So remove by scubbing the material against itself or run it around chair leg. pad up and using the flat surface of pad, softly push the ink into the areas that have been bit with acid. Making circular motions work from the centre to the outside.Be aware that the heat of your hand will warm ink and blur it, so angle plate when you handle it. You are not forcing ink into bite it’s like abolishing motion.

Circular motion to apply ink

Circular motion to apply ink

Now that your plate is inked, prepare it for the etching press. The paper we used was Fabriano Rosapina.  Some printers soak the paper for at least an hour (depending on the type) in water. Then blot the paper and place each piece when needed over the etching plate.  Or the paper can be pre sponged, each sheet, piled and then kept moist by wrapping in plastic.

First proof always ink in black

First proof always ink in black.

On the press place your copper plate, design side facing up. Lay your paper over the copper plate. On top of the paper place  the wool blanket and then pull the plate through the etching press. “The intense pressure of the steel drum on the press pushes the soft damp paper into the bitten areas of my plate that contain ink and my image is printed.” http://www.julialuceycom

Our finished works

The print can be coloured with ink. As the colour yellow can be thick and tacky, Francis our teacher suggested  using oil of Lavender or oil of cloves to dilute the ink.

How many prints would you suggest we take from each etched plate?

Francis suggests taking 50  to 30 prints per edition.

All that was left to do was clean the copper plate with baby oil  and wrap in tissue paper to store. I highly recommend you try copper plate etching.

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Stress and your centre that controls it.

A girlfriend is very distressed by the problems caused by getting her mother in to a nursing home and now as her mother is deteriorating, our friend is choosing to sleep each night close to her Mother. This is immediate stress, palpable and public but also needs to be addressed for her immediate and long term health.

My  cousin has suffered from Arthymic  heart problems for many years ( possibly starting when he was drafted to serve in the Vietnam war.) Long term stress, that was not delt with at the time. He needed to get a job  on his return home and his wife was quickly pregnant.

Last week a friend confided to us, that he also had the problem, like s trapped butterfly beating against  his chest, I was trying to think how could I help. I understand that each of these situations carries  the results of long-term stress we are often unaware it is building within.  Until the body throws disease at us. So I thought about stress, how it enters the body/mind?  How to control it, and how  we can take back that control?

In yoga we do a posture to align the pituitary,thyroid and thymus glands. Meditation is a tool to control stress, but as my friend does neither of these I wanted to think of a different  approach. So below are  my musings and possibly a solution that would help others.

Meditation painting by Lorraine Willcock

Meditation painting by Lorraine Willcock

Each Yoga class contains a Prana section, Focussing on correct breathing techniques. We understand the importance of breath and how it does calm the body releasing the emotional detrius that we hold in the body in the form of tension.

The master glands are thought of as the hypothalamus and the pituitary, from the pituitary gland hormones are secreted into the bloodstream. These are the hormones to calm your body now often  called the “feel good hormones.” Your body is well able to deal with passing stress, . Normally when we face stress, the body reacts by reacting in ” fight and flight or freeze mode”. Then finding time to rest and relax and recover.  If it becomes  long term,  deep trauma or a chronic situation your adrenal glands become overburdened and exhausted.

It’s as if the body has got stuck, the memory returns, after all it is held in your cellular memory. And if you take no steps to address these memories, or to find time to de-stress, your body will warn you with a minor illness,  in bed for a day with a cold or a migraine headache.If you still you have  not addressed the cause of stress or trauma, your body will try to protect you  by creating a much more serious illness.

Doctor Ben Johnston and Alexander Loyd have described this in their book ‘The Healing Codes.’ “The hypothalamus serves as a central processing unit for the whole brain. It has connections to all of the limbic System – the emotional centers of the brain. In fact, it has nerve connections to virtually every part of the brain and connects to the rest of your body through the hormones that it manufactures and releases through the pituitary.  Here is a short list of some functions  the hypothalamus controls:

  1. Arterial blood  pressure
  2. Body temperature
  3. Regulation of body water by thirst and kidney function
  4. Uterine contractility
  5. Breast  milk
  6. Emotional drives
  7. Growth hormone
  8.  Adrenal glands
  9. Thyroid hormone
  10. Sex organ function

Physiologically, the effects of stress result in change in all of the above organs, especially in the adrenal, cortisol, glucose, insulin, and growth hormone release.”wwwthehealingcodes.com

Here is simple way to break the pattern of stress . You can do this daily.

Sit comfortably in a chair your feet flat on the ground (maybe a pillow under your feet if you cannot touch the ground) push your tailbone into the back of the chair.

Feel the floor beneath you, straighten  your spine, allow your shoulders to drop into a comfortable position, your head just floating on your neck.Close your eyes and imagine that your chin is parallel to the floor. begin to deepen  your breathing,mentally saying  “This breath is slower, this next breath a lot slower and deeper.”

Now move your mind to your feet and the sensation with your feet resting on the floor, sink into the feeling, no analysing no judging, just move your mind from your left foot to your right foot, perhaps you can notice there is a difference between the two.

Just hold your mind at the bottom of your feet be aware of how you touch the floor. bring your mind to the sensation of bottom on chair. Just feel the weight of your body on the chair. Settle your mind until it becomes calmer,  quieter.

Now travel your mind up your spine feeling the sensation of your back resting against the chair. Now go to your chest_ the sensation of your chest rising and f alling with breath. Again you are not judging or analysing, just being with the sensation.

Bring your attention to your arms, to the space where they  rest on your lap or on your thighs. Rest your mind at this place.

Now mind moves to your face. Notice the sensations of the muscles in your face. Are they relaxed or is there tension there? Without judging or wanting to change anything just be aware of the muscles in your face.

Now hold all of this  in your mind the sensation of your feet on the floor, your spine comfortably erect, hands resting on thighs. How is your spine, the muscles in your face?

Again

not judging  or  trying to change anything simply being aware of how you feel.

Once more go back to your breath So that this breath is slower. From behind your closed eyes, just move around your body mentally. Resting. Now move in your mind to the space around your body, flowing to an awareness of the room around you. Be still let your breath come slowly.

When you are ready, slowly open your eyes, coming back into the room around you. Take a few deep breaths. And I’m sure you will feel so much better and more centred. You may wish to practice this before sitting in meditation.Meditation

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