I’ve come to realize lately that my mind is never at rest. Sometimes that’s a good thing. It prevents me from being bored (except on Friday afternoons when there’s only one hour left of work and I can’t bring myself to do a single thing) because I’m constantly thinking of things to think about. But it can also be the crappiest thing in the world.
Seriously. All I want to do is relax, and I feel like I can’t. It’s not because I have a super busy schedule, because I totally don’t. I go to work for eight hours, pick up my daughter from school, maybe go to the library, and we’re done for the whole day. From the moment we get home, I should be able to shut off my mind and just enjoy the freedom of not having a single thing to do.
My daughter has no problem doing that.
But no. My mind, unfortunately, doesn’t operate that way. I’m constantly thinking of all the things I need to get done. And the sad thing is that they’re not even important things. Seriously – they’re the most pointless things in the world for someone to worry about, and yet here I am…constantly thinking about them!
Example: I’m currently re-reading the Harry Potter series for the kajiillionth time, but I’ve got the YA lit bug again and have found a ton of books I want to read. But I can’t just stop reading Harry Potter, so I’m trying to jam through the serious as fast as possible. Which is fine, of course, because I love the series, and normally jam through the series fairly quickly anyway. But it’s hard when I’m also trying to listen to music…
Example: Because of fall taking full effect here in the upper Midwest, bringing us cold weather and the occasional snow flurry, I find myself wanting to listen to Christmas music. I do, however, have a rule in which I don’t listen to Christmas music until the day after Thanksgiving. Which is fine. But right now I’m doing this thing where I’m listening to all the albums on my iPod in alphabetical order. I’m currently on the “P” albums, which is about 63% of the way through 13,614 songs. My goal, of course, is to finish all these songs by the day after Thanksgiving – November 23 – so I can then add all my Christmas music to my iPod and enjoy the holiday music season. So when I’m not trying to finish reading Harry Potter, I’m telling myself I should be listening to my iPod to try get through all these songs. But then I start thinking about TV…
Example: After sitting through the Supernatural panel at Comic-Con this past summer, I realized that I wanted to start watching the show since I had never seen it before. I knew I had seven seasons to catch up on, but I thought for sure I’d be all caught up by the start of season eight. But of course I’m not, and I’m still trying to get through the series. Season eight started at the beginning of October, and on Hulu the episodes are available for about five weeks. Which means that by next week, the first episode of the season will be gone. Which means that if I don’t finish watching season seven (I have twelve episodes to go) by next week, I’m not going to see episode one of season eight.
Okay, I know this all sounds completely insane, and by far the most ridiculous first-world problems anyone has ever had. Why is it such a big deal if I finish re-reading the Harry Potter series or not? I can easily just stop, read a couple of YA books, and then go back to Harry. And who cares if I don’t finish listening to all those songs on my iPod? And why should I force myself to wait until November 23 to listen to Christmas music? And is it really a huge deal if I miss one or two episodes of Supernatural when they’ll be on again in a few months in reruns?
Of course not. Which brings me to my next topic: Meditation. I’ve heard through the interwebs that mediation helps with calming your mind and relieving you of your anxieties, which is definitely something that I need. In addition to those three ridiculous things I that are on my mind lately, I’m constantly feeling anxious about little things like, “Oh, I have to go to Target to pick up this” or “I have to schedule a dentist appointment” or “I hope traffic doesn’t suck” or “I haven’t blogged all week” or “Rent is due in three days” or “I shouldn’t have this second can of Diet Coke or I’ll get cancer” or “I hope the bank I have to go to doesn’t get robbed” or “I hope no one hits me on the freeway”…and it just goes on and on from there. And let me tell you:
So if Gwyneth Paltrow is right in all her Kabbalah teachings of meditation, it seems like there may be a non-medicated cure for me. Just a few minutes to clear my head are all I need to realize that all these things I think about are rather ridiculous and somewhat irrational. Just a few minutes to build my internal energy, to find my chi, and to gain a sense of well-being are – hopefully – all I need.
This, of course, will take some hard work and dedication on my part, but I’m determined to break through this wall of crazy thought and breathe a little. Which happens to be one of the most important parts of meditation: breathing. So let’s all take a deep breath together, push aside all thoughts of what you must do by that certain date, and just BE.
(I can only breathe for a few minutes, though, because I have to go finish reading books, listening to music, and watching shows.)