Ritual and Meditation

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the Importance of Ritual. Bringing a sense of ritual can be very helpful in your meditation practice.

Remember that I mentioned that ritual helps tell your mind that you are moving into a new space. Meditation is definitely entering a new space, so any cues you can give your mind will help you move into that altered space will make your meditation practice that much easier.

There are many things you can do to add ritual to your meditation practice. Here are a few examples:

  • Unplug your phone
  • Light candles or incense to set the mood
  • Put on your favorite meditation music or white noise generator
  • Put on a guided meditation recording (shameless plug!)
  • Have a specific location in your home or office that you go to to meditate
  • Sit or lay down in your favorite meditation position
  • Count forwards or backwards
  • Repeat a mantra

As with any action you take, the intention is what makes it a ritual or routine. Be mindful as you make your preparations to meditate.  What is the main thing you would like to achieve or take out of this meditation session? A few things you may want to take away from your meditation include:

  • A greater sense of peace, joy, love, etc.
  • A quiet mind
  • A solution to a problem or question
  • Healing
  • Setting your intentions for the day
  • A greater connection to your Higher Self or Source
  • Gratitude

This list is only a few of the things that I use meditation for. Be creative, and have fun with it! What rituals do you to to prepare yourself to meditate?



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The Power of Appreciation

As I write this, it is 1:30 am for the second time tonight (thank you Daylight Savings), and I am in the Vancouver airport waiting to be able to check in for my flight. I’m off for a week long training session with Coach for Life.

It’s been quite the journey getting just this far. I had to work earlier today, and I only had a brief time with my boys before it was time to head out. And that’s when the best laid plans completely fell apart.

I won’t go into details. The quick version is that the car wouldn’t start, I couldn’t even jump it. I had to make an extra trip to the grocery store when I planned on leaving to make sure the boys would have lunch on Monday for school. It was pouring rain, and I was afraid I might miss the ferry. And on the way I found out that the ferry I was planning to take was cancelled.

I will admit, when I finally said my super brief goodbye to my boys, and started driving down the highway in the “wrong” vehicle, I cried.

Not for long. I started appreciating that we had just done the repairs on the van so I was safe driving in the rain. Later I appreciated the sign that gave me the information about the ferry before I drove to the wrong terminal. I was grateful I had planned for the earlier ferry, so I still had time to catch the last boat on the other route.

On the bus ride through West Vancouver, there was a loud man complaining about many things. Instead of becoming irritated, I chose to appreciate the fact that there was a bus at all, and the driver who not only stayed up so late to drive it, but was also very safe and considerate about staying on his schedule.

I appreciated the quaint downtown corridor, and the really cool lights in the trees that looked like dripping water. And I am grateful for the free wireless access here at the airport that allows me to write this blog post now and send it out to you.

So instead of being grumpy that I am not sleeping in a cozy bed, I am perfectly happy and feeling good.

All is well in my world. How about yours?