Pre-baby, I had the luxury of allocating anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour and a half for meditation in any given day. Regularly meditating means I’m nicer, calmer and generally more ‘together’. And, when I’m working giving readings or coaching, it’s imperative I meditate beforehand as it grounds and centres me, and helps facilitate my connection.
Now, post-baby as the sleep deprived mother of a screaming newborn, my meditation practice looks a little different! Meditating with a baby in the house is a little more difficult, but not impossible. As Little Miss completed her second month of life, and her screaming and demands escalated, I realised she was actually presenting me an opportunity to practice what I’ve learned in a very new way.
For the first couple of weeks of her life, I didn’t meditate. And this probably made matters worse. Then I remembered that meditation isn’t just about the time I’m sitting, formally practicing meditation. Rather, it’s about taking what’s learnt during meditation into all moments of the day. It’s about practicing mindfulness at all times. My challenge was to be mindfully present during these new routines with my baby, rather than letting them distract from my meditation.
Once I looked, I found plenty of times with Little Miss that I was not mindfully present, but rather, allowing my mind to wonder aimlessly. I quickly turned this around and began meditating in a new way. For example, while Little Miss feeds, I meditate. While trying to soothe her screams, I meditate. Given, it’s a different type of meditation to what I used to practice, but it’s meditation none the less. All it takes is an awareness that your mind is wandering, then calling it back to the present moment.
I like to take this further, focusing on my breathing and opening my heart chakra. You can try this yourself, without a screaming baby. Simply be present in whatever challenge you are facing and spend a few moments slowing your breathing and centering your attention on your chest. Sometimes I simply smile to my heart and from my heart.
Just with Little Miss’s feeds alone, I can steal 15 minutes here and there to meditate through the day. But, this is a tip for anyone – why not meditate while brushing your teeth, on public transport, while on hold on the phone. Simply bring your mind back and be present.
Where’s the most unusual place you’ve forced yourself to be present?
Image via theorganisedhousewife.com.au