Meditation For People Who Don’t Get It But Really Need It

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New York Times Best Selling Author, Celebrity Fitness trainer  Chalene Johnson recently asked me to be a guest on her podcast show!  I’d love for you to take a listen below and let me know your thoughts…

The Chalene Show – Podcasts – Meditation For People Who Dont Get It But Really Need It

Today is the day that I start my journey towards understanding if meditation has a place in my daily routine.  I’m speaking Andrew Kelley, a.k.a. “The Boston Buddha”.  Andy answers all of my rapidly-paced questions about meditation: Do I have to close my eyes? Do I have to sit with my legs crossed? Where should I meditate and for how long? And, most importantly, WHY should I meditate?

Fact: A lot of very successful people meditate. Another fact: I don’t. However, it seems like everywhere I turn, another super successful person is mentioning how important meditation is to them  on a daily basis. I already have a process that I go through every morning: plan my day, make my bed, stop and take a moment of gratitude, pray, exercise –  is there even room for meditation?

Some common questions about meditation:

Do I have to close my eyes?

Andy says, “No,” but he does recommend that as you’re starting, you should block out as many distractions as possible – and closing your eyes helps.

Do I have to sit with my legs crossed?

Nope. Andy says the idea is to be comfortable and that early practitioners of meditation didn’t have comfy couches like we do.

Why should I meditate?

People who practice and endorse meditation say that it helps them re-focus their mind and also provides them with a sense of calm. Andy says he started meditating because he was having a hard time sleeping and he was pleasantly surprised that it only took one week for his sleeping habits to improve.

When should I meditate?

There is no “right’ time, but you might have to make meditating a priority in your schedule. Many people meditate in the morning because there is nothing else scheduled at that time – it’s quiet and there are no pressing demands on their time. You’ll need to find the time that works best for yourself.

Lastly, JOIN ME ON MY 30-DAY CHALLENGE THROUGH MEDITATION!

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4 Minute Mood Shift

BuddhaBreak – Don’t have time to do a full 30 minute body scan meditation? That’s OK, we’ve got you covered! Try my “4 Minute Mood Shift” throughout the day. I find that this mini meditation really helps me dislodge stress and tension and snaps me out of my negative moods.

MINUTE 1: Focus on any physical stress and tension in the body.
MINUTE 2: Focus on what your feelings and thoughts.
MINUTE 3: Bring your attention in and focus on the breath.
MINUTE 4: See if you can expand your awareness around the breath to include your whole body sitting there breathing – from your head to your feet.

I hope this helps!

Commit to Sit 2015 – The 250 Work Day Meditation Challenge

TBB_transformMeditation, much like exercise isn’t always easy.  Most people don’t like it, but if we can get past a certain point together – usually it takes about two weeks to a month of workouts – you’ll get committed.  So to help you stay committed you can connect with us every week.

The Challenge:

Meditate, twice a day – for 10 minutes, Monday through Friday, 5 days a week. Take the weekend off.

Who:

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced meditator, if you want to harness the power of meditation to manage stress, lower blood pressure, improve focus, get better sleep, or explore your own inner landscape, this is an exceptional opportunity to learn with some of the most accomplished leaders in the field of mindfulness and meditation. We welcome everyone to be part of this amazing journey.

When:

Starting January 6, this meditation challenge will be open to everyone. We will kick it off again this year at Monday’s Move & Meditate 6:30 PM at Stil Studio. Invite your friends!

The Path:

We will break each week down into themes. The theme is designed to help us focus on one aspect of meditation and mindfulness that we can work on for that week. Each theme will have a corresponding quote – that we can come back to and read. It should help us remember to practice mindfulness in our everyday life. We want to keep the theme of the week in our awareness all week long so we suggest people print it our or post it all over your home/work, etc. The 250 work day challenge is designed to show you how easy it can be to work meditation into your day – integrating a new mindful attitude – changing your choices and life.

Throughout the WHOLE YEAR we will explore many different meditation styles and practices – and play around with different techniques, time periods, and provide tools that keep you inspired to commit to sit. The goal is to find a mediation practice that works for YOU, so you can sustain it throughout the whole year. You can have access to our special Move & Meditate Facebook Group where we can support and encourage each other the whole year, share our experience, the breakthroughs and roadblocks, ask questions, and offer ideas and theme suggestions for future classes.

We encourage everyone to share their own personal experiences each day on the fb page so we can keep it central, and you can see your own growth over time, you can also share tips and suggestions from your personal experience.

The Method:

• daily tips, posts, and inspirational quotes.

• more BuddhaBreaks and takeaways tools to assist you in creating lasting change through meditation.

• got a question about meditation? “Ask Andy” anytime.

Please join us on our heartfelt mission to bring meditation and mindfulness into your daily life and into the lives of those around you.

Why:

Since August of 2005, my dharma has been simple and clear – make meditation accessible to as many people as I can so they can connect more fully to the present moment and be happier in their lives.

I hope to see you in class!

-Andy

Interior Illumination

BuddhaBreak: Simplify Your Meditation During The Holidays

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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.

Commit To Sit 2014 – The 250 "Work Day" Meditation Challenge with Stil Studio and The Boston Buddha

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“Don’t think. Feel.”  – Bruce Lee

 

The Challenge:

Meditate twice a day – for ten minutes – Monday through Friday, 5 days a week.  Take the weekend off.

GOOD NEWS: Yoga and Shavasana count as a meditation, so come to yoga with us at STIL STUDIO!

Who:

Whether you are a beginner or have years of experience, join us to manage your stress a little easier, lower your blood pressure, improve your focus, enjoy better sleep or explore your inner landscape – this is an exceptional opportunity to learn with some of the most accomplished leaders in the field of mindfulness and meditation. We welcome everyone to be a part of this amazing journey!

What: Meditate with The Boston Buddha and Stil Studio.

When: Continue reading “Commit To Sit 2014 – The 250 "Work Day" Meditation Challenge with Stil Studio and The Boston Buddha”

Connecting Beyond The Classroom

June, 2012 – Taken by my Special Photographer – Anika

I had the pleasure of seeing one of my students yesterday, Tiye, who is now up at the middle school.  She was picking up her younger sister from school and came right over to me with a big smile on her face.  She told me how she still remembers to use her breath to come back to the present moment when she’s feeling stressed.  Tiye holds the record for taking our Morning Mindfulness classes – four sessions in a row.

I’ve seen Tiye’s confidence grow over those two years and now it seems that she can jump hurdles that would stop most of us adults.  Just seeing her enthusiasm smile made me smile, proof that kindness is truly contagious.

Peace IN.

-Andy

 

 

Coconut – Here's why.

There’s a poem titled “Coconut” (by Paul Hostovsky) on my website – bottom right under the featured video – that explains The Boston Buddha logo.  In a word it symbolizes happiness to me.  It’s about a father and his young son out grocery shopping.  The son – very aware and observant finds “happiness” in everyday things like a coconut.  The dad needs to remember that sense of awe, appreciation, and the exuberance with which his son experiences these everyday things.  So, they bring it home and try to figure out how to get inside.  Here are a few of my students reading it.

 

Check it out and let me know if you think my older brother will be the next poet laureate…

Peace in.

 
-Andy