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@ Meditating while traveling – Alfred

See (1) to know about Alfred. 

Returned from a 3 week trip bike riding in Ireland. I was able to meditate daily for the entire trip except the big travel days going and coming. Meditating while traveling gave me several insights.

I began to see the trip as a scale model of my life at home. When at home, I have the usual stresses focused around work, money, relationships and managing things, both physical and mental. At home, meditation helps me keep all of this in perspective and adds a calm cadence to my daily life.

When I travel, I disregard most all of these usual stresses and replace them with a new set. Will the plane be on time for my next connection? Will the rental bicycles be satisfactory? Will I be able to drive on the left side of the road without becoming a casualty? Will tomorrow’s 40 mile bike ride be in a torrential rain storm? These worries loomed large at the beginning of the trip, but as things unfolded and, for the most part worked out well, the stress was reduced. As the stress lessened, I found it easier to still my mind in meditation.

When I returned home, I had over 70 items of mail to deal with, 234 emails, text messages and a host of other things that demanded my immediate attention. Thrust back into the maelstrom of my life, I found it hard at first to still my mind. But in a few days, as order was restored in my routine, my meditation practice returned to the way it was pre-trip and I found calmness easy to access and also some progress almost every day.

The point of all this is that problems always exist in life but the way you perceive them can vary widely. Assumptions about the way things are, is often largely illusionary. It is really a choice we each have, to be crippled by our way of thinking, or to see things more philosophically and not let our perceptions destroy our mental well-being. Often times we feel frustrated or weak because we allow ourselves to adopt an unhealthy attitude. With practice I believe you can change your moods like you would change an article of clothing. Adopting a more patient and thoughtful mood allows us to keep our challenges in perspective. It allows us to see that, no matter how difficult a situation seems, it too will pass.

(1) Alfred
His previous posts

Related pages
How to  drive like a Buddha
My mind related articles relevant to the last para above

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@ Letting all the little things fall away

Feedback from a young man. A few months back, I gave him the handouts (2) and suggested to try the technique at bedtime, to get good sleep. On my subsequent visits, he said he was using the technique and happy about it. On my request, he recently sent the following feedback.  

“As someone that deals with the public on a daily basis, I take a lot of abuse and my job has a lot of stress. As a result, I’ve become short tempered, especially when I have a bout of insomnia which I’ve had most of my life.

By using the ‘focusing on breathing’ technique (1), I am able to calm my self physically and mentally, letting all the little things that bother me throughout the day fall away. It helps me to keep things in perspective and get a decent eight hours of sleep every night. (3)”

(1) How to enjoy quality sleep and conquer Insomnia by ‘Focusing on breathing’?
(2) Documents for Download

Updates
March 21, 2013: He said “The other day I had too many customers and some of them were rude. To keep my cool, I went to the back room, did my breathing for a while, calmed my self down and came out. I do this so I can have a good night’s sleep without thinking of all such incidents.
July 6, 2013: I cut back on my mental health medicines 

Related pages
Relief from Insomnia – Success stories

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