Habit of the Month – April

As I mentioned last month, I’m not very good at sitting still and just being. I’ve got a lot going on at the moment, and whilst I fall asleep quite quickly at night, I often wake in the middle of the night (having a bladder the size of a hazelnut does not help here) and find that my mind is whirring.

I used to find swimming quite meditative, I used to count my lengths and so there wasn’t really much of a chance to think about anything else. Over the past few years, I’ve had less opportunity to swim and so I’ve lost my that brain time. Added to that, there’s a lot more to think about once you’ve had children, so you can see how it’s easy to have a brain that’s constantly overflowing.

I read an article about mindfulness earlier this year, and some aspects of it and what it tries to achieve really resonated with me. The article was written by Headspace founder Andi Puddicombe, and I decided to download the app and try “Take 10”, which is a free introductory course of 10 sessions which introduce the techniques of meditation. I’d be lying if I said it was revelatory, but I did enjoy taking that time out and at the end of the course I invested in a year’s subscription, which allowed me to complete the initial introduction and also gave access to a number of different courses and guided sessions.

It took me a while to get through the initial course – the first 10 days is 10 mins, then it increased to 15 and then 20. I found myself getting a bit fidgety by the end of 20 mins, I have a busy life and, well, I’m not very good at sitting still! However, I was pleased to see that you could pick the length of your session in subsequent packs, and 10 mins is definitely manageable.

However, I’ve bit a bit inconsistent with it, probably finding (or should I say making) the time to do it every few days. My life isn’t getting any quieter, so I’m going to commit to finding 10 mins for myself each day going forward to complete a session. I’m not sure whether I’m ever going to become a total convert, but at the very least I get 10 mins a day where I’m reminded to focus on something other than my immediate issues, and take a little time for me too.

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