Friday, February 08, 2013

Mindful Mutterings

It. Is. What. it. Is.

That's kind of the basis of mindfulness meditation. To be in the moment, and accept it. At least, to accept it without judgement.

That's the hard part.

So I am actually taking an 8-week couirse, led by a physician who used these techniques herself when in crisis some years ago. Based on the work of Jon_Kabat-Zinn , author of Full Catastrophe Living, my course takes me through the physiology of stress and anxiety, the way the brain works in relation to stress, and ways to tackle it: yoga nidra, full-body scans, sitting in silence, breathing.

I decided to take the course when I realized I was exhausted from letting every. little. thing bother me. The half-heineyed drivers, the people with 16 items in their grocery cart, the shennanigans of my work colleagues. Most of all, I was tired of worrying about things yet to happen: whether my son gets into the high school of his choice, my daugther's battle with school cliques, my sabbatical, my health. Where we might live in the future.

I was tired of feeling like a different tiger was crouched to consume me every other minute.

I'm half-way in, but so far I have learned to pause before reacting, to breathe. And that comes in handy at 2 in the morning and all the past and future worries consume. And I have begun to realize that it does not make sense to worry about those things I cannot control; in the end, all I can control is my reaction to people and events.

And they say you can't teach an old dog new tricks.

So, how do you handle stress? And what's stressing you these days?

Much peace...


  1. Sounds great, Linda. My shoulder injury is stressing me. I guess i deal with it by trying to do the exercises prescribed by my therapist, which are oddly stressful as well. I keep meaning to enroll in a yoga class, and maybe it's time to stop meaning and start doing.

    1. I had PT last year for a shoulder/neck injury, and the PT appointments and *homework* were stressful--and painful. So I get you. There are different types of yoga, and finding ones that are called restorative or nidra help best with stress. Homework in any shape or form stresses me, even my mindful meditation homework. Hope your shoulder gets better (and hope it's not your *writing* shoulder). Peace...

  2. Here it seems the major appliances keep throwing us curve balls. First the dishwasher, and now the washing machine and fridge are becoming grumpy. If it's not one thing it's another. Hope you find the strength and inner peace to handle the varied stresses thrown your way. Sounds like your class is helping.

  3. Major appliances. And minor (hello! does ANYONE make a toaster oven that toasts?). Hang tough on those appliances and do some alternative nose breathing when you get the estimate for the new fridge. Peace...

  4. Too many stressors in my life, Linda, and none are helped by talking about them. But I wish you the best in your journey.

  5. Meditation scares the crap out of me! (Right, that tells you a lot) Glad to see you taking it so seriously, and I can't wait to hear about your journey with it.

  6. Hi Linda!

    Really enjoying the blog, and great post! I guess for me, the eternal and omnipresent stresses of money, rent and bills, of life and the future. How do I deal with it? I try to channel it into a creative outlet of some kind. I might record some music, or draw a picture- despite my woefully inadequate artistic skills, it certainly does give me some productive relief. I also do yoga once a week, but I will be taking a leaf out of your book by attempting some breathing techniques!

    I was wondering if you would be interested in sharing your blog on Glipho? Glipho is a new social blogging network that aims to promote the writing of its users and help build their audiences. We are trying to establish a creative community at Glipho, and your blog is just what we are looking for.

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    If you're interested check out our website at and have a look around. Please feel free to ask me any questions, and if you would like to receive an invite to set up an account!

    Have a great day,


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