I was supposed to wake up early the next morning to join my theory class, but I could not keep my eyes open and felt sick to my stomach from exhaustion. I messaged my instructor Kati and she was okay with me sleeping instead of joining the class. I had a horrible sleep for the rest of the morning. My landlord had come in to make some repairs, and it was difficult to sleep while they worked. Once they were finished though, I did get some sleep.
Meditation in My Desk Chair
I woke up just before our Meditation Workshop/ Theory Class at 4pm. The class was not long as I hadn't done any of the material necessary to give feedback for, but I met the other student who was in Florida. After this class, I got started on my homework. I had to read a few things regarding meditation and what it was and some of the barriers to it, and to also read about Vipassana, which is a simple meditation practice. Then I got to do my first Guided Meditation. It was called a Rapid Relaxation Meditation and could be done from anywhere. I sat in my desk chair, grounded my feet, and followed along with Kati's voice.
Kati instructed us to find a comfortable seated position in the chair we were in and place our feet solidly on the ground. She had us sit up straight and place our hands on our knees/ thighs. She then guided us into relaxation. Throughout the meditation we were to exhale our breath forcefully with sound and allow a wave of relaxation to come over us. Kati also instructed us to move our bodies side to side as well as our heads briefly.
After each meditation, we were required to journal our experience. My journal entry for this meditation read as this:
“I enjoyed this meditation. I am feeling calm, relaxed, and happy. My body feels great, minus the soreness between my shoulder blades. Every time my mind wandered, I was able to bring it back to my breath and feel my body. I also noticed that I tend to have a song playing in my mind as well and this can bring me back but continues to play in the background as my mind wanders. There were a few times that my thinking took over for 10-15 second periods but I was able to come back to my breath. I get distracted by anything and everything, from old memories to what I want to call my MTTC blog entries. I try to remind myself that I can come up with that later and come back to my breath.
The lesson I take from this is: the more I practice, the more I improve at staying focussed on my breath and body. Thoughts quickly and easily enter my mind, but just as quickly I realize it is happening and come back to my breath. I really enjoyed sighing my breath out and feel the wave of relaxation come over me! Also, when instructed to move my body and head side to side, I wanted to stay still! Strange!”
I also read the theory material and realized that I naturally meditate and have for a very long time. Mindfulness is a large part of meditation, and I am naturally mindful and very self-aware. After this I went on to the Guided Gratitude Meditation as this was my main focus in my offered Gentle Stretch & Gratitude Meditation Class. I knew that after this training I would be changing the class to a straight Guided Gratitude Meditation Class and was eager to see the differences between my version of this and a trained Meditation Teacher's version.
The Guided Gratitude Meditation was wonderful! There were some major differences between this and my own Gratitude Meditation. This largest difference was that I would instruct my students to find one thing they are grateful for, whereas Kati was instructing us through everything in our lives that we could be grateful for. I knew I was going to adapt this class for my own. My journal entry after the Guided Gratitude Meditation read as this:
“I feel connected with myself and I finally feel whole-heartedly thankful to be me and be alive! I feel connected. I feel whole. I feel free. I feel grateful for all of these feelings!”
To be continued.....