Wednesday, 27 May 2015
My Meditation Journal
I have wandered through many different meditation traditions, schools of thought, styles and teachers over the 20+ years since I first learnt to meditate (you can read a little more about how I learnt to meditate here) .. I have always been a passionate and eager student, keen to learn more, understand more and experience more.
This year I have really felt drawn to expanding my view again. Meditation is such a solitary practice that I felt I needed new discussions, new insights and someone to share the journey with. A teacher.
And so (as the Universe would have it) I have been very lucky over the last couple of months to have attended some great meditation events and teachings, including attending the two day Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute program (after having followed Chade Meng Tan's journey for many years) and various expert panel discussions.
And then out of the blue a few weeks ago another opportunity presented itself .. to undertake training with a meditation teacher that I have long admired and whose work I have followed for many years.
And as part of this new journey .. I have committed to writing a 30 day Meditation Journal.
A Meditation Journal
From Search Inside Yourself:
The cornerstone of knowing and aligning thyself is mindfulness. Even if you have no other practice than mindfulness alone, you will, over time, create the level of self-awareness you need to find alignment. Mindfulness alone is sufficient- that is the good news. The better news is there are also other ways to help you clarify your values and higher purpose to yourself. One way is to tell them to other people. Another way is to journal about them.
Mindfulness is the practice of being present in the moment, while also maintaining an awareness of where we have been (reflection) .. a meditation journal can assist us in developing these areas of awareness so that we can have a more expansive understanding of ourselves and our meditation experience.
I recently found a 2010 study in Anxiety, Stress & Coping which reported that writing about a stressful event for just 20 minutes on two different days lowered levels of perceived stress. That putting feelings on paper appears to organize thoughts, helping us process experiences and release negative emotions.
Keeping a meditation journal is one tool that allows us to 'capture' some of the essence of our daily practice, including any challenges or questions, which over time will give us a wonderful insight into our journey.
And so I have committed to a twice daily practice (20+ minutes each) which I shall record in my Meditation Journal - what practice I do, the duration, reflections, questions and comments.
My schedule will be AM early in the morning as I have done for many years and so am already in the habit .. and PM sometime in the afternoon. Other than when I am taking an evening meditation class, I have never had a regular evening meditation practice so I suspect this is going to my first challenge!
And I have set up an online blog so I can record my meditations which I can then have nicely printed into a book for my teacher.
And I cannot wait to see what unfolds.
Will you join me in starting a Meditation Journal?