relaxation

Quiet time each day is so important, but many are so out of practice that it’s almost unnerving to be in stillness.

It’s funny to imagine our lives as something we spend a lot of time avoiding, because it seems like that would be impossible to do. Our lives consist of everything we engage in, from showering to sleeping, but also a lot of busy work that distracts us and keeps us from looking at our lives. Experiencing our life from the inside means taking time each day to simply be alone and quiet in the presence of our soul. Many of us are so out of practice that it‚s almost unnerving to have a moment to ourselves. As a result, we may have stopped trying to carve out that time to take a seat at the center of our lives.

One of the reasons it can be uncomfortable to sit with ourselves is because when we do, we tend to open ourselves to an inner voice, which might question the way we‚re living or some of the choices we‚re making. Sometimes the voice reminds us of our secret, inner yearnings, dreams we thought we had forgotten. When we already feel overwhelmed by our busy schedules, the idea of hearing this voice can be exhausting. However, its reflections are the chords that connect us to our authentic selves, and they are the very things that make our lives worth living. When we continually avoid connecting with our life, we risk losing out on the very purpose of our existence.

To begin the process of being more present and less absent in your life, you might want to set aside just a few minutes each day to simply sit with yourself. This doesn’t mean watching a movie or reading a book, but taking time each day for self-examination to avoid the avoidance, to be with yourself in an open way. After a while, you may start to enjoy this part of the day so much that you make less busy work for yourself, so that you can spend more time at the center of your own life, rather than hovering like a planet around the sun.

The most valuable of yoga postures is to stand unshaken in calm inner serenity amidst the crash of breaking worlds.

An easy way to reduce stress and energize your body and mind is to get to bed early and spend the hour before bed winding down with quiet activities like reading, meditation, or a warm bath. Very simple and effective!

In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside of you.

Take a few (or many) moments throughout the day to stretch the body. It’s relaxing, it’s good for the mind and circulation, and it’s very calming in the midst of everyday stresses. It’s extremely simple yet it works wonders. For more benefit, try watching the breath as you’re stretching….. a great practice for a quick mental cleanse.

earthdrop
Awakening is Up to You

Breathing in, breathing out, feeling resentful, feeling happy, being able to drop it, not being able to drop it, eating our food, brushing our teeth, walking, sitting—whatever we’re doing could be done with one intention. That intention is that we want to wake up, we want to ripen our compassion, and we want to ripen our ability to let go, we want to realize our connection with all beings. Everything in our lives has the potential to wake us up or to put us to sleep. Allowing it to awaken us is up to us.

- Pema Chodron

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