The Boston Buddha Blog
BuddhaBreak: Simplify Your Meditation During The Holidays
The holiday rush can add a ton of stress to our already too busy day. Think about it, there are now seemingly way more things to do, more things to buy, more disruptions in our usual routines – it can be a heavy price to pay on our body and mind.
I feel like I’m going through this now. As all of my classes are wrapping up for the year, I’ve had this feeling of not having enough time to do what is needed – to connect fully – without thinking of all the stuff I need to get done, or didn’t get done. In the beginning of some of my meditations this week, I’ve felt restless and anxious and will notice one of my restless legs tapping (a sure sign for me that my body and mind is saying saying, “hurry up, Andy… get this over with.” .
No matter how busy the holidays get, we need to take time each day to stop and be present with our life – as it is – even if it’s restless.
If you can’t meditate for 10 minutes each day, don’t throw in the towel. Meditating for 5 minutes can be just as an effective practice – even better for you, if you can schedule it in a few times a day.
Above all, remember our mantra for this year – be kind to yourself. Inner peace is the best place to make sure we all make it hOMe for the holidays;).
I hope this helps.
Yoga and meditation is about trying to do everything with intention, every breath you take, every move you make (great song), every interaction – is action with meaning. It’s moving through our yoga class noting every placement, every posture, every modification, and every judgement. It also reminds us to put things in perspective and gives deeper meaning to those little moments when we’re able to let go of the stress of the day and focus on what we came to do – be in the room and practice.
So setting an intention clearly at the beginning of class is really the key to waking up – and as Will Hunting would say, “let the healing begin”.
I recently had breakfast with a yoga teacher who was telling me that she felt like she hit a plateau in her meditation practice. Let’s face it, we all get stuck in ruts in different aspects of our life from time to time. The difference between somebody that has REALLY hit a plateau in their life and somebody who continues to unfold in a real way, is the sincerity of their INTENTIONS. This yoga teacher is clearly passionate, disciplined, and dedicated to the honesty of her practice. It takes courage to feel that we can really BE open to our full potentiality and strengthen our attention. The whole sense of attention is challenging because it’s just so easy to space out on all the things we don’t really need to pay attention to during the day. It requires discipline and constant cultivation in an open, curious way.
This is why I often say that whole path of mindfulness is attention, intention, and attitude. We all have this sincere INTENTION to wake up, to be with what’s here – and then we train ourselves to pay ATTENTION to the little moments – noticing our ATTITUDE in a way that really frees us.
The Attention is: present moment awareness.
The Intention is: why am I paying attention? What is the purpose?
The Attitude is: how am I paying attention? Is my attention open, curious – or is it rigid and judgmental?
Reflecting on these three elements has become integral to my practice, and often forms the beginning or end of the sequence when I’m teaching, and frees me up when I’m giving an assist.
Most importantly, it connects my practice to the other important things in my life and extends into the rest of my day.
I hope this helps!
What creates the sense of suffering for me, and I feel for everyone really, is the sensation that our minds cannot relax and be with the truth of each experience, unless it is the way WE want it to be.
When we meditate we’re developing our emotional awareness to be with what IS happening. We’re able to pop out of our own experience and view ourselves ‘in the moment’. This helps bring some clarity into our own emotions and, in time, we become more comfortable with ourselves in any given situation. This leads to authentic self confidence and fear and suffering starts to dissolve.
For this month we will focus on dealing with suffering and difficult situations. We will see if we can LOOSEN our grip on trying to control each moment.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 10th
11:30 AM – 12:30 PM
THE WEYMOUTH CLUB
75 FINNELL DRIVE
WEYMOUTH, MA 02188
The meditation technique taught in this class uses your awareness of the present moment (and breath) to help you stay in THIS moment without judging the moment, or yourself.
Each class ends with a 20 minute guided meditation.
$10 for Weymouth Club Mind/Body Members
$15 for Weymouth Club Members
$30 for Non-Members
ABOUT THE BOSTON BUDDHA – He has been called the blue collar Buddha and a Happiness Ambassador, and he’s all that and more – the guy you just met but feel like you’ve known your whole life, the guy who has you doubled over laughing within minutes. And, oh yeah, he’s the guy who can teach you how to enjoy life.
Andy Kelley founded The Boston Buddha to help ordinary people like himself, learn to detach and recharge through meditation. He prides himself on being a “regular guy” that reaches an audience that might not otherwise be inclined to meditate.
Andy studied under Dr. Deepak Chopra and Dr. David Simon, co-founders of The Chopra Center and renowned experts in the field of mind-body medicine. Andy is currently a certified Meditation Instructor for The Chopra Center. He is also a graduate of the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Program founded by Jon Kabat-Zinn at the Center for Mindfulness at UMass Medical School.
Andy has worked with companies such as Hill Holiday, Thomson Reuters, and the American Association of University Women among others.
Andy Kelley’s mantra is “Meditation for Everyone”.
“I am an old man and I have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened.” – Mark Twain
Most of us are bombarded with tons of stuff all throughout our day. We have too much on our plate, emails, phone calls, texts to return, and deadlines quickly approaching. Management is on top of us, everyone seems to rely on us – and to top it all off, we have to leave work ‘on time’ today to pick up the kids and feed them before baseball practice. We’re under a lot of pressure – so much that we suspect the quality of our work, day, and life is suffering.
Let’s face it, there will always be stress in our life. The difference between those who are calm, relaxed, and focused in these stressful times, and those who aren’t, is based on HOW you deal with stress in the moment.
When we’re overstressed, we react, go too fast, and can pile on even more stress by making little mistakes that we would not usually make. When this happens, we tend to be a little too hard on ourselves. We say things like, “What the hell’s wrong with me?“, ” You did it again, you idiot“, etc. As if being a total donkey to our self with some nasty self-criticism will make us feel better. Continue reading »
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