To date, I’ve stuck with the commitment for a total of 108 days (an auspicious number of which I had not realized until writing this post), or nearly a quarter of the year. There are days that I devote upwards of 20 minutes per session; while there have been other days where the session is as short as a few minutes. There are days where I have meditated several times throughout the day, but for shorter periods. On other days I sit only once but for a longer time. Most of my sessions take place on my cushion at home, while other sessions have taken place at the gym, in a guest room while traveling and even in a bathroom which happened to be the only place I could find some quiet and privacy.
My intention, beginning in May, is to set a time commitment in order to require myself to extend each session to a set minimum duration. Now that I have a firm base of meditating each day, the natural progression should be to expand the time devoted to each session.
Join the Challenge! No excuses!
Commit, today, to spending a few minutes each day doing “Nothing”, i.e. sitting in meditation. I would encourage you to set a goal and commit to meditating, everyday, for the next 30 days. See how it goes and what you experience. As a mediation teacher, I find it interesting how much we can struggle with doing nothing for a few minutes throughout our week; how much resistance, anger and fear can pop up when the idea of relinquishing control for a few minutes a day is entertained. We often have little difficulty attending to a hard workout or going for a run. We are often more than willing to devote an enormous amount of time and energy to a work project. We are too often content spending hours each week in front of the TV or on the computer, yet we can’t seem to find the time or muster the motivation to sit quietly for a few minutes, focusing on our breath and letting go. In general, I understand this and I often know why I have the same resistance within myself or why a student struggles to make meditation a priority, yet it is something you have to discover for yourself. It is through this time in stillness that these sorts of “secrets” may be reviled. Though you should not have this expectation on you practice and you should realize that most insights do not occur during meditation, so much as they are unveiled during mundane moments of our day. I challenge you to confront your fears, your resistance, your defensiveness, your aversion, and your know-it-all ego. Pull up a meditation cushion and just sit still for a while.
So, who’s in? If so, shoot me an email or post your commitment to the “comments” section of this post. Also, if you have never been instructed on how to meditate, let me know - I am here to help.
Look for another update on my 365 day challenge soon!