Understanding the Body and the Mind
- Practice focusing the attention and observing the mind and the body.
- To have the power to choose where and on what we place our attention by observing and understanding the sensations of the body and their impact on the mind.
- To understand the self – our foundational thought and sensation patterns – and our triggers more intimately to be in choice over what we respond to and how we respond.
- Ultimately, to expand our capacity and awareness of the self, others, and the world around us.
- Between 5 and 20 minutes.
- Observe the breath by focusing attention on the rising and falling of the chest or belly, or the more advanced version of noticing the sensation of the in and out breath on the place below the nostrils and above the upper lip.
- Find a comfortable place to sit where you can keep your back straight and relaxed.
- A quite environment is preferable.
- Many choose to meditate in the early morning before others have woken and begin to stir or at night for the same reasons.
- Your car or your office can also work well.
- Close your eyes.
- This will help manage your attention from getting distracted by external stimuli.
- It will help you focus on observing how distracting your internal world can be.
- Notice what muscles you contract while breathing. Relax them. Notice when they become engaged. Again, relax them. You are moving toward effortless breathing.
- You will notice your mind is “busy”. The goal is observation of the mind, not cessation of thought.
- This is our brain at work. This is its job. You are to notice how you think, how your mind works.
- You are to remain unattached to the thoughts. You are NOT to follow them. You will come up with some compelling and amazing ideas. DO NOT FOLLOW THEM. They will come back to you.
- When you notice that you are thinking, label it by saying “Thinking.” Be gentle with yourself. And return to observing the sensation of the breath.
- Stay in the practice for the entire time of your commitment.
- If strong and overwhelming emotions arise and are destabilizing or hard to come back from, contact me or a trauma trained therapist.