Many meditation teachers say that we can use everything as a meditation. We can mindfully wash dishes. We can be fully present when we are doing laundry. We can breathe and inhale the steam and warmth when we iron (yes, I still iron and I really enjoy it). We can notice the movement of our hands as we prepare meals, be aware of the texture of the different foods. We can rush through, or we can slow down, be aware, and have a few minute moving meditation.
I tend to “meditate” in the car by talking to my angels and guides. I have a dialogue with them about what’s going on, what I’m thinking about, what I need help with. And I thank them in advance for receiving what’s for my highest good.
As we get into bed, we can call on our angels, guides, protectors in spirit, or anyone we communicate with on the other side. We can intentionally let go of the day and anything we need to release from times past. We can just do a wholesale letting go, without even knowing what baggage we need to drop. We can make room for more good than we can imagine.
We can be silent and breathe for a moment or two or a minute or two. We can stare out at nature for a few minutes and just zone out. We don’t have to make a ritual of sitting at a certain time of day for a certain amount of time, unless that feels good and supports us. Some of us need that structure and commitment.
As a caregiver for a loved one, or children or a family, and ourselves, we have ample opportunities to breathe into a small meditation. As we help someone to the bathroom, as we assist in bathing and dressing we can be fully present, immersing ourselves in just this task, this moment. As we prepare meals and notice we’d rather be doing something else, or we wish they could hurry up, or wake up, or grow up, or be the way they used to be, we can be willing to have compassion and patience for ourselves and for them. All of these are meditations.
As we attend to the endless tasks of life, sinking into the moment and paying attention changes our perspective. As I feel my fingers typing this newsletter on the keyboard I am aware of my gratitude that someone will read this. I am amazed at the whole process of fingers flying over a keyboard without having to think about it! I marvel at the beautiful day outside, the quiet, the sunlight, that sense of Nature quivering on the cusp of winter turned spring.
All of that is a meditation. Whenever we show up in the present moment, and allow ourselves to notice whatever comes up and let move on, that is a meditation. We can even notice our grasping, our holding on, label it for what it is – grasping, holding, fear, worry, anxiety – and surround it in a cloud or bubble, and send it on its way, as best we can. And try to remember that anything unlike love is very human, and temporary.
I like how Pema Chödrön says it:
You are the sky. Everything else – it’s just the weather.