This morning, and a Saturday morning at that, I found myself, yet again eating toast over the sink in the kitchen (saves a plate and a space in the dishwasher) ……….. home made bread as well (well bread maker made bread) hurrying it down, unloading the dishwasher at the same time, mentally writing the shopping list for the supermarket I needed to get to before the rest of the day could begin…………..I didn’t even taste the toast it went down so fast. It was only when I got a searing pain in my chest as the crust got stuck on the way down that I stopped to draw breath.
Is this the way to live? Really? Could I not have sat down even for 15 minutes to savour my breakfast? Now really is the time to practise mindfulness. We all have ridiculously busy schedules, we carry our smartphones/iPads/Blackberries with us at all times. We are always contactable with others, 24 hours a day in some cases (who knows if my son needs to get in touch with me at 3am????)………Yet DO WE TAKE THE TIME TO BE IN CONTACT WITH OURSELVES? Even if only for 15 minutes?
A dear friend shared a short meditation exercise with me, it involves no special equipment or lotus position sitting and can be done on the train, the bus or whilst walking the dog. He assures me it takes him 15 minutes, the length of his bus journey to work.
Take a moment to get comfortable. Look around you and notice 3 things you can see, really notice them one by one. Then, notice 3 things that you can hear and really take the time to hear each sound one by one. Finally notice 3 things that you can feel around you, it might be the sensation of wind on your face, your clothes on your body or the seat beneath you. Once you have done this begin again, this time noticing 2 things that you can see, hear and feel, choose different ones, it allows you to really quieten your mind and go deep within. Finally notice 1 new thing that you can see, one that you can hear and one that you can feel.
Try it! You will be amazed at the peace and insight gained from spending just 15 minutes being mindful of the world surrounding you.
There is a Part Two to this exercise which I will tell you about soon………..