I have a confession to make. I don’t always meditate every day, even though I tell everyone they should.
What happens to me is what happens to most of us. We have every intention to stop, to sit still for brief time, to just be. But life gets going, we get revved up, and the day slips by before we know it. We smack our foreheads on the way to bed and say “Oops, I forgot to meditate today!”
I wrote a book about learning to meditate, and, for the most part, I practice what I preach. I do this not to be goody-two shoes perfect, but because I really do understand how I benefit from doing what I tell other people to do.
But I get sloppy.
I convince myself that as an experienced meditator who knows the value of meditation, I will remember to sit every day – but this really isn’t true. I go on automatic pilot, get through the entire day, and smack my forehead on the way to bed, just like everyone else.
I was talking with a friend about how I was having trouble with my spiritual connection, and she asked me how often I was sitting.
Big (huge) light bulb moment!
I saw a direct correlation between how often I meditated and how connected I felt to my spiritual source.
So I changed my practice from that of “I know I will remember to sit every day because I write about this and I’m a seasoned meditator and I’m really cool with this, thanks” to something really brilliant. I decided to set a time that I will meditate every day. Okay, snicker if you want. I’m just trying to be honest here, even if it makes me look like a bit of a doofus.
After I implemented this brilliant plan, I sat every day, usually for 30 minutes.
I did this for 10 days. Here is what happened during that time. I slept really well every night. I was open and creative, and completely focused when I needed to be. I loved myself and those around me. I was inspired and inspiring. I was connected to my spiritual source. In short, life was great!
And then one day, I “forgot” to meditate.
It wasn’t on purpose. I was out running errands and didn’t get back in time, and then it slipped my mind that day. The next day, I managed to sit but not at the appointed time. Slippery slope. In an amazingly short period of time, I had reverted to my former hit and miss approach.
And guess what? Didn’t sleep as well. Not as creative. Not able to focus like before. Striving for spiritual connection, but feeling like it eluded me. Inspiration was a distant memory.
What have I learned from this fall from grace? Simply this, it really is a fall from grace.
Do I want grace? You bet. I love grace. I love the way it makes me feel. And I know how to get it. Every day, at the appointed hour, all I have to do is sit for 30 minutes.
And say to myself every day that what seems most important actually is most important. So act on it. Every day. My life will work better.
This is my story. What’s yours?
Learn more about my journey to become a meditator in
Choosing To Be: Lessons in Living From a Feline Zen Master