Intentional Balance Between Movement and Meditation
At the end of last year I was reminded of how my body craves exercise and movement in general. Of course all bodies work that way. Yet I learned or rather am still in the process of full body learning that my connection to the world is primarily physical, meaning e.g. I get clarity by moving my body. I have a sharp mind that’s keen on solving problems and I engage in it often, sometimes actually too often. But there are times when my mind goes into thinking loops which then means my emotions get into feeling loops and off I go into overdrive striving for a solution that I simply cannot get by engaging my mind, the least actually if I try to analyze and dissect my feelings.
The only true solution is to go move my body, best to take a walk or at least engage my body in some physical activity – hand washing dishes is a good one. It takes a while for my mind to calm down and to allow it to let go of the problem solving attempt, but afterwards I usually get an intuitive hit, an aha that solves the problem or helps me truly understand something or gives me just the next step that needs to be taken. And in case my intuition doesn’t kick in with the solution at least I feel calm and peaceful, sometimes even serene. And I have to say I realized that this process is most readily available when moving in nature. Ha, writing this out makes me be more clear about my own process and better yet of its value for me.
The funky thing with feeling the cravings of my body for movement is that I can loose that feeling if I do not follow it for a long enough time. Then I need a while of consistent movement for the craving to kick in again, just as I had happen at the end of last year. Now I am determined to not loose that feeling again while at the same time I am fighting against the habit of not exercising regularly. So this week feeling the resistance to go outside (too much snow and too cold – yeah, I know, you Canadians probably are laughing your heads of right now…) I “tricked” myself into exercising inside by using youtube fitness videos and some gadgets I already have at home. And it was a wonderful feeling to break out a sweat and I love how working my body connects me with my self confidence. It’s even visible in the way I walk afterwards and the good posture I get from doing it regularly.
And since I bought a meditation cushion I put it to use also after exercising first. And the difference between simply meditating and first exercising and then meditating astounded me. Usually meditating is kind of hard for me because of the having to sit still factor. I had already learned that I need some kind of “movement” that’s why I never even attempt to meditate in silence anymore, but always use some kind of audio meditation track. Yet having exercised beforehand gave me a way to release the need for movement and made it sooo much easier to lean back and enjoy the calm of the meditation.