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Lessons From the End of a Marriage

A “How to Thrive” Guide After Divorce

Taming the Monkey Mind: Days 8 & 9

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Don’t worry, the monkeys didn’t get me.  Not that they didn’t try…

Thursday was one of those days.  If I hadn’t made a public commitment to meditate for 28 consecutive days, I am afraid that Thursday would have marked the end of my streak.

I have pretty much established the routine of meditating for around 20 minutes in the morning before work.  Thursday’s schedule was off because my boyfriend was out of town, which leaves me with morning dog care.  I elected to not get up earlier (5:00 am is early enough on the day I teach two extra classes) and to meditate after work.  When I came home that afternoon to find my boyfriend’s car unexpectedly in the garage, my first thought was, “Yeah, he’s home,” followed by, “I need to make sure I don’t neglect meditation tonight.”  He and I do not get much evening time together between his martial arts and work schedules and my inflexible teaching hours.  That time we do have is precious, and I want to take advantage of it.

So, here’s how Thursday night went down.  After a warm greeting, small snack, and quick chat, I went to change into workout clothes.  I had already decided to run 3 miles that day along with 10 100-yard sprints, so I headed to the park to make it happen.  The running went well and allowed me to discharge the yuck from the day (Thursday’s are especially yucky, thus the intensity of the sprints was needed).

Then, a short drive home was followed by a second snack (dinner in 3 stages), and a shower.  My boyfriend was interested in trying (together) an 8:00 pm yoga class at our gym, which left me with about 30 minutes to myself before we would have to leave.  Now, at this point in the day, I had literally only sat to drive to and from work and to ingest food.  I had spent my day meeting the needs of others, which the exception of the run.  I was exhausted, physically and mentally.  All I really wanted to do was collapse and read for those 30 minutes.  But, I had made a commitment.

It was not a successful meditation as far as my mental focus was concerned.  But it was still a success for me.  First, I didn’t neglect the practice on a day when it would have been so easy to do just that.  Secondly, I noticed that, even though my mind was frenetic, my breathing was deep, even, and calm.  That is major progress.

We enjoyed the yoga class, and I even managed to sneak in a mini meditation during chavasana, with was made especially nice by the instructor’s expert classical guitar playing.

A small monkey. Singapore.
A small monkey. Singapore. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On Friday, I was back into the groove of my morning practice.  Or so I thought.  I used a guided meditation podcast that I had downloaded a few days prior.  I failed to notice that the playback speed was set to 2x.  Now that makes for an interesting meditation.  I guess it is one way to fit in it to a hectic schedule, but I must say, I wouldn’t recommend it.

So, the lessons from days 8 & 9: commit even when the practice isn’t perfect, meditation changes your breathing even when your mind isn’t aware of it, and check the playback speed before getting your om on.

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6 thoughts on “Taming the Monkey Mind: Days 8 & 9

  1. I must admit, you are Wonderful.
    Your integrity is gritty-great.

    Thanks for your example of greatness. I need it.
    I owe ya.


  2. I agree; deep meditations, and tai chi/qigong, always help to get me centered –nothing quite amazing as these arts!! Great post and I look forward to sharing more with you:)

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