I recently re-committed to a regular meditation practice. I say “re-committed” because it speaks to the truth: I’ve tried (and given up) regular meditation many times. In all of my previous attempts at a regular seated practice, I hit a wall where my frustration overwhelmed my commitment and I simply quit.
Not this time. I’ve made a commitment to myself that – no matter what – I’m going to sit for meditation every day. And my hope is that, by sharing my experience with you, I’ll not only hold strong to my commitment, but I’ll encourage you to do the same.
So far, I’ve logged 10 consecutive days of meditation practice – a new personal record, actually! And, let me tell you, it’s been tough. Half of the time, I sit down to meditate begrudgingly, completely by rote. This is usually the point where I decide meditation is for the birds and I give up.
[An acting coach once told me] that when you have to act the role of being in love with someone, the way to do it is to pay very close attention to the actor you are supposed to love. The audience, he said, will feel your attentiveness as love. In spirituality, paying close attention doesn’t just simulate love, it actually evokes it. Practicing prayer, invocation and surrender will always eventually create feelings of devotion, even if we start out mechanically. That’s why we do the practices: because they give rise to love inside us.”
If we just show up consistently for our practice – even when we don’t feel like it – eventually, our hearts will open. This was the message I needed. Even if I sit on my cushion purely mechanically and just offer 15 minutes to breathing, even if my mind wanders wildly, over time to consistent practice of sitting will reap its rewards. It might take days, months, even years… I don’t know. I’ll let you know when I find out.
What are you committing to in your life? I invite you to share your commitment as a means of solidifying it.Â Whether it’s meditation practice, unrolling your yoga mat, drinking more water, or reading more books, I want to know and I want to support you. Let’s use this space to honor each other’s commitments and to give each other the encouragement to press on with our practice, whatever that practice may be.