Worries and anxieties can rob us of your inner peace and poise and affect our physical health as well. Almost all of us are challenged with these negative emotions and the first step is to recognize when they manifest themselves inside of you. Worries and anxieties may erupt quite quickly in the face of a particular event or might subside within our consciousness on a daily basis. Even if we are an experienced meditator, being aware, clear and honest with ourselves about our level of stress allows us the opportunity to consciously create more peace, tranquility and harmony within.
The next step is willingness to take a moment to calm, focus and meditate; even if it is just for a moment or two. Sri Chinmoy offered the following advice:
Question: If we are confused and nervous, how will meditation ever be able to help us?
Sri Chinmoy: “In the physical world if somebody is sick, we do not say that he will never be well again. If he goes to a doctor and takes medicine, there is every possibility that he will be cured. If somebody is assailed by physical ailments, medicine is the answer. If somebody is assailed by anxiety, worry and confusion, then meditation is the remedy. Just because an individual right now is a victim to inner suffering, we cannot say that his case is hopeless. The meditation-solution is there, provided the individual wants to be cured.”
If we are suddenly assailed with worries and anxieties a great immediate remedy is to focus are awareness on our breath and slow it down. If even for just a minute or two, concentrate solely on taking slower, deeper breaths and allow your body to slow down and relax as well. Imagine breathing in peace and releasing tension and stress while breathing out.
When there is more time available try leading yourself through a visualization exercise. Find a quite place to sit down and completely absorb your imagination in something that calms your mind, emotions and body’s energy. Imagination can spark the wealth of light and inner peace that already resides inside of your spiritual heart and soul.
Below is an inspiring visualization exercise focusing on the beauty and vastness of the ocean. After reading each sentence, take a good five seconds or so (or three relaxed breaths) to immerse yourself and experience what is being described with all your senses:
Begin by seeing yourself sitting on a quite beach. Feel the warm golden sand underneath you. Hear the sound of gentle waves. Smell the fresh air. Gaze out onto a bright, clear, calm turquoise blue ocean.
Allow yourself to simply relax and enjoy the beauty that surrounds you.
Observe gentle waves slowly rolling in and then receding back into the ocean.
Start to align the rhythm of your breath with the rhythm of the waves; breathing out as the waves come towards you and breathing back in as they draw back into the sea. Take a moment to connect with how lovely the ocean is while you quietly draw your breath in as the ocean recedes and exhale back out as it expands.
Now slowly rise and walk into the water. It is very comfortable, relaxing, warm, clear and blue. You are able to easily stroll past the small waves and eventually float out to where the water is perfectly still and calm.
As you silently float a little farther out, become aware of how peaceful and vast the ocean is – spreading out in all directions. An infinite expanse of clear bright turquois blue water. And like a drop entering back into the sea, feel yourself slowly dissolve into the beauty, peace and serenity that completely surrounds you. You, yourself, becoming as vast, still, clear and beautifully blue as the ocean water around you.
Now gently bring your awareness back to your breath. As you breathe in draw this expanse of beauty and peace inside of you creating a reservoir of calm and clarity that you can draw from throughout the day. Feel reassured that you have created and now possess a deeper feeling of tranquility and serenity inside of you.
In our classes in San Diego we offer many different techniques to quite the mind and increase our awareness of the inner peace from deep within. Please check our schedule and join us for an aspiring journey of learning more about meditation and spirituality.