A Moment of the (Extra) Day

Wow…an entire day to do with what I choose…bwahahahah!   Seems I forgot to leave February 29th out of the scheduling.  It had, by early this morning, become just another day.

But my day starts differently nowadays.  I have re-instituted an old pattern that was life-changing in the beginning and has not lost its power.

Many years ago my husband and I found the value of Transcendental Meditation and paid (in those years) a lot of money to learn it and introduce it to our young children.  In those years, well before the widespread introduction of Buddhism into our culture and before the Beatles joined the movement, this was considered to be “out there”.

It worked for us. We each noticed a difference in the other when we were practicing.  I found TM to be almost magical in those years.  As a young mother I was burning the candle at both ends.  Meditation soothed me.  I imagined that 10 minutes of my mantra made up for a missing 5 hours of sleep.  No problem.   And then I let  time and tasks intervene.

Yet for years I have intermittently tried to keep meditation in my life.  I listen to Pema Chodron and realize that there are lifelong practitioners who have the same problem I have; an overactive mind.  Too much of my meditation time has been spent planning dinner and torturing problems that can’t be solved.

Last fall my daughter-in-law asked me to join her in a free 21-day Meditation Challenge from Deepak Chopra.  A guided meditation was posted each day on the website for the Chopra Center.  I immediately loved it.  Being talked into and guided through 12 to 20 minutes of mindfulness and mindlessness fit me perfectly.  With the exception of a few days, I have followed this practice daily since that introduction.

This morning during the meditation (did I mention that my mind is still overactive?) I thought…”Why, am I not spreading the word?”

So here it is.  21-Day Meditation Challenge.   Click that link and change your attitude.   This is a free program.  And it’s not too late!  (This challenge began 10 days ago but you are allowed to access 10 past days worth of daily meditations so it isn’t too late. Also, the concept is to create a habit in 21 days, so if you have to repeat one day in order to complete the challenge…that works.)

I know.  This is weird.  I don’t usually promote anything on my blog.  However, I’m a believer.  I’m not going to belabor you with how it has changed the way I move through my days.  I’ll let you find that out for yourselves.

After all, you have an entire extra day to get started! On your mark, get set…



    • I have been very successful since I keep it available for when I wake in the morning. I do it before I leave my bed and it seems to work. If I don’t do it then, I have to really work to set aside the time.


  1. This is wonderful! And we share a very similar thing: an overactive mind. I’m thinking and planning *all the time*. It’s almost compulsive. I have a hard time to let go of my thoughts and just *be*. But this is exactly what I have to do to keep a balance.

    My mom is a TM teacher (and my maternal grandmom is as well). When I was 5, I asked my mom how I could find my way to God, so she taught me how to meditate (children’t meditation). I later got introduced to the adult TM techique, but for some reason, it didn’t work for me. I have no idea why. It gave me headaches and left me exhausted. For some years, I stopped meditating altogether.

    Two years ago, my general exhaustion was so bad that I wasn’t able to function properly anymore (1 or 2 hours of feeling okay a day, the rest was just survival), and I started therapy. My therapist suggested I should try mindfulness meditation, and so I did. Just focusing on my breath and letting all my thoughts and feelings pass like clouds in the sky. In the beginning, it was incredibly difficult, and I couldn’t do more than half a minute. But I kept practicing, and it got better and helped me *so much*. So now, I do mindfulness meditation regularly – as meditation sessions, but also during activities, by focusing on nothing else than what I’m currently doing. I’ve also integrated this in my piano playing, and it worked very well.

    I very much believe in the power of meditation. It frees the mind. Both my parents are TM practitioners (and many of their friends are as well – my Dad meets with his closest friends every week, and they meditate together and then go out for dinner :D), and I do mindfulness meditation. It’s so valuable.


    • This active mind is why I find mindfulness and meditation training so valuable. If I can pull myself into the present, even for a few moments, I have succeeded. I try not to be too hard on myself about it.

      I’m not too good at group meditation. I am a wiggler and being in a group, whether it is being “checked” for TM, sitting in a Buddhist Sangha, or in a traditional church service, seems to bring out the wiggly in me.


  2. “Look at a day when you are supremely satisfied at the end. It’s not a day when you lounge around doing nothing; it’s when you’ve had everything to do, and you’ve done it.”
    ~ Margaret Thatcher

    Apart from the early morning meditation, a session at the end of the day, before going to sleep, does wonders!


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