Meditation: Get off your Ass (or, Beyond Sitting Practice)


Most of us by now have heard the benefits of including daily meditation into our lives. It helps make us calmer and more peaceful, it lengthens our fuses so we don’t have hair-trigger reactions to every little thing, it makes us smarter, and on and on. Yes, all of that is true, but what most articles fail to mention are the many ways in which you can meditate. Meditation is usually only portrayed as sitting cross-legged on a cushion with eyes closed and hands in some sort of mudra.

However, that narrow definition does not work for most of us. Sometimes that type of meditation is exactly what I need. When I come home from a day of making lunches, driving kids to school, an 8-hour workday packed into 5, picking up kids, tending to their emotional needs, then realize it’s only 3:30 and I really need a nap; that’s when this type of meditation is perfect for me. I get to refresh my brain and senses and end up feeling like I took that 20-minute power nap without any of the post nap grogginess.

But most of the time a sitting meditation isn’t what I need. That’s where I do a more active meditation. Thich Nhat Hahn calls it Mindfulness Practice, but the premise is that anything can be a meditation when you do it with your full presence. It’s far easier for me to slip into a meditative state of mind when my body is doing something else, and I’ll bet the same goes for a lot of us. So don’t beat yourself up if you don’t do sitting practice on a regular basis. You do what works for you.

Here’s a list of some of my favorite meditation practices:
  • brewing and drinking tea
  • cooking and eating
  • chores, like cleaning
  • prayer
  • physical activity like walking or dancing
  • daydreaming
  • napping
  • being in nature
  • anything that is play
  • music, listening and creating
  • cloud watching
  • reading to myself and to others
  • participating in a group of like-minded people
  • watching the flames of a fire dance
  • heart-to-heart dialogue
  • crying
  • journaling and writing
  • tarot and oracle cards
  • connecting to the current phase of the moon
  • bodywork like massage or acupuncture
  • bathing in salt water
  • star gazing

What about you? Comment below and share how you practice meditation.


And for a more humorous take on meditation here ya go!

Glittered with colorful language:

Just for fun:

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