COVID-19 has brought us inside which can be an invitation to look inside ourselves. We are literally on a retreat, retreating from the usual everyday business of our lives. Online offerings abound with opportunities to participate in group guided meditations and talks of many varieties. Recently I have participated in Tara Brach’s weekly podcast and a zoom celebration of Sharon Salzberg’s 10-year anniversary re-release of her book Real Happiness. The book is an inspiring read plus a Mindfulness “how to”. The Salzberg interview inspired me to listen to Dan Harris’s 10% Happier podcast interview with Salzberg ~ more inspiration!
Compassion for ourselves is key. “Metta” or “Loving Kindness” meditations positively influence us and our relationships.
Example of Loving Kindness meditation:
May I be Healthy
May I be Happy
May I be free from suffering
May I live with ease.
May you be healthy
May you ….
Repeating round one with a new pronoun for each round. The first round is wishing yourself loving kindness, then a loved one, then a more casual friend, then your community on out into the world: May all beings be healthy….
Chances are, if you practice this you will feel better, perhaps more motivated, and more able to be the person you would like yourself to be. Loving kindness is a self-actualization process. Sometimes it takes courage to push ourselves into action to actually experience the process and thereby reap the benefits. Can you find a 10-minute period during your day that you can commit to Loving Kindness or some form of meditation? You may miss a day. Then you return. Possibly finding that time can be a benefit of your COVID-19 “retreat” as it has been for so many others.
Here are some recommendations for COVID-19 and beyond:
Tara Brach on her Facebook page and YouTube offers weekly meditations at 7:30 PM ET. Click here for more details.
I invite any questions you have about this or any post.