A Meditative Year in the Mountains

Recently I notched up 365 continuous days of meditation. I had meditated before, usually over shorter bursts of time when there was something going on in my life that required me to step aside and find a small pocket of time to help create a calm space for my mind. But in the past year I have managed to incorporate meditation as a part of my daily routine.

Mornings are usually the best time of day for me to meditate, before the demands, noises and challenges of the day are too clearly defined. It wouldn’t be true to say it is a time of complete tranquility as the mind is always at work on something. In my experience it is better to accept that thoughts will come along, invited or otherwise, and that it is easier to note or acknowledge them before returning the focus to the breath. Meditation is a small part of the day’s entirety and thoughts will reappear later if required.

As a creature of habit I tend to meditate in a couple of regular locations. When the weather permits, there is a seat under a leafy tree in my garden that is a favourite spot. There is something wonderful about opening my eyes after meditating and looking at up the sky through a green canopy that enhances the experience.

In times of upheaval, it has been helpful to meditate just before sleep, to slow down the busy mind and to bring focus back to the simplicity of breathing in, breathing out.

The benefits are many, both large and small. Knowing that a simple exercise can help to recalibrate my mind, creating a sense of clam regardless of chaos, is a comfort beyond words.

Do you have meditative moments in your day?

[Photo: lavender in bloom]

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13 thoughts on “A Meditative Year in the Mountains

  1. great post! many congrats – how do you tally your hours?

    I’ve been doing some of my sloppy form of meditation – lying down – via a free app I love called Breathe

    also, when I do a yoga class (3-4 times a week) I try to focus on a positive word with its feeling during each pose

    • Thank you for sharing your meditative moments – always interesting to learn what others do. I stumbled across an app called Headspace and tried the free trial and it just clicked. I like the mix of meditations available, including visualisation. There are also emergency meditations, if you like, for stressful moments which have been really helpful. I think it’s great how you have the association of a positive word during your yoga class – what a great idea. Thanks again for sharing.

      • will have to check out headspace. as for the visualizations, I write a bit about it on my blog – if you’re interested, type ‘cancer has blessings’ into search box at top of right column.

    • Thanks, Sara, and you are right about the process. Some days there is a sense of sweet tranquility, other days it is hard to drown out the endless chatter in my own head … It is so good when it works, though, which is why I keep doing it!

  2. First of all, the lavender is beautiful, and I like your image about the leafy tree/ green canopy. It makes me long for spring.

    I’ve tried meditation with audio tapes and yoga practice. My mind is much too active. The days I practice yoga and truly listen and focus, not simply follow the routine, are when I feel the closest to a meditation experience. I agree it is soothing.

    • Thank you for your comments on the lavender – it is one of my favourite garden snippets. Meditation is such a personal experience and however you find that sense of calm and focus is unique. Some days are definitely better than others and I’ve begun to treasure those moments when it clicks. Soothing sums it up well – thanks!

    • That sounds great – and it’s a good reminder that meditation isn’t necessarily a cross-legged or static pose. It can be mindful, active meditation. I like the image of the world when it is quite still – lovely.

  3. I envy you. I have never been able to carve out the few minutes or so that it would take to meditate. I must try harder, because I believe the benefits are many.

    • Thank you, Barbara. Meditation seemed to come along at a time when I needed to manage some challenges in life and I was after a circuit breaker of sorts – something to stop then endless cycling of thoughts and to-dos. My meditation sessions are usually short which makes it easier to slot it in around other demands. There are lots of options and guided meditations out there, and I hope you can find something that suits you.

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