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Friday, December 30, 2016

Vitamins for the Soul


There is a third choice besides being busy and killing time, something profound.”
James Rozoff

The lake is almost flat today. Crosshatches spread across the water's surface, where yesterday, blustery, were white caps as far as one could see. The rising sun reflects pale lavender, and all is still.

In the new year, I want to master my busyness. To find some minutes in the day to simply stop, and allow quiet to fall around me and bring me to stillness. Here at Lake Martin, the movement of the water, whether blustery or calm, mesmerizes. At home, the ticking of the clock is only a reminder of how much there is to do, and how far behind I am. I wonder whether you battle these same distractions.

On the Live and Dare website, Giovanni Dienstmann, lists the benefits of meditation practice. There have been some 3,000 scientific studies showing that daily meditation, regardless of what type you use, benefits the immune system, and therefore, overall health. It lowers blood pressure, increases mental strength and focus, reduces sadness, depression, hostility, and reactivity, and increases creativity; it improves breathing and heart rate. Most people, including me, get tripped up on what actually constitutes meditation. Do I have to sit on a mat on the floor and clear my mind of any thoughts—no. Do I have to come up with a mantra to vocalize—no. Do I have to manage my breath and focus on my diaphragm—no. You can simply stop, and spend 20 minutes watching the wind blow, the water ripple, the fire wave, the clouds go by, or listen to birdsong. If you live in a busy city, you can walk (not power walk, but mindfully walk), or sit and watch the cars go by. Or you can sit inside your house and listen to quiet music or a guided meditation. The whole purpose is to stop, and come to a place of mental and physical stillness. For twenty minutes, do nothing—just be.

If you knew, without doubt, that there is one simple thing you can do for a mere twenty minutes a day, that would improve your overall life, health and relationships, as well as, increase your longevity, why would you not do it? Quietude is vitamins for the soul. Let's get some today.

                                                               In the Spirit,

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