Just Relax, and Focus.

I’m trying, I swear.

On the advice of a reader and fellow blogger, I will be taking a look at some options for meditation. I think it’s something that will likely help me stay centered, relaxed and focused. Which I need.

If you’ve been around a while, you know that I’m a few things: Easily stressed, easily overwhelmed, Overly emotional/reactionary, and I don’t relax easily. That’s kind of a volatile combination. I’m aware of it, and it’s one of the reasons I took up yoga.

Meditation

Meditation (Photo credit: Moyan_Brenn)

As a mostly sedentary life-form, I knew I needed to find some sort of activity that would at the very least get me to move more than my remote control thumb. I also recognized that I have some emotional instability that could use some attention. So I looked for something that would benefit body and mind in equal measure. Yoga is definitely an improvement.

Given my tendencies to let future concerns worry me and my reactionary nature, it can be hard to use some of the ‘Be present in the moment’ lessons from my yoga practice. I think that I am getting a lot of what I need physically from yoga at the moment, but maybe the mental and emotional side needs a little more attention than my classes are providing.

That’s why I am taking advice to heart and I will be looking for some meditation techniques. Some of the more common techniques haven’t worked for me as of yet, but I might be able to find an uncommon one that suits me better. I am after all an uncommon person.

Aside from that, I am looking forward to the rest of this week. I have a small surprise planned for tomorrow, and the weekend might actually be relaxing for me. Along with my recent haircut, that I have been exceptionally happy with, decent HandEgg (American Football) from my teams, and the start of Basketball season, Things might just be getting upbeat enough to take away from work-based frustrations.

We will just have to see

I need a Vacation

No really, I need some time away from people.

I need to get more than a couple of days off. I could use a day or two to get caught up on home responsibilities. Get all of that out of the way.

then I need to take a couple of days to just go away. Like, into the woods, by a lake, with just food, books and paper to write/draw on. Or I could do out to the beach. I dig the beach. Especially in the fall when the evil sun is less prevalent.

English: Pismo Creek estuary, Pismo Beach. tak...

English: Pismo Creek estuary, Pismo Beach. taken from Addie Vacation Townhomes trail. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m not trying to complain this time. I’m just making an observation. I haven’t really been able to find a way to get the batteries fully recharged recently. My job is such that I have to deal with a lot of people and a fair amount of stress most days.

I believe myself to be an introvert, who happens to be good at conversation. I may be fine at a gathering of people, but I generally prefer quiet/just music and solitude/less interaction.

I’m able to just about get myself recharged enough to function the next day. Then I use the weekends to make a big push to be functional for the week. That typically means that I’m pretty wiped out at the end of the work day. Which usually results in a desire to be a bum the rest of the evening.

I just need to get a full recharge under my belt. I’m not sure how I’m going to make that happen though. I might have time to get away for a day or two, but I’m certainly not going to get a week or half a week off of work.

C’est la vie I suppose.

I’m Baaaack!

English: US Capitol at night. A mosaic image o...

English: US Capitol at night. A mosaic image of around 10 segments taken with a Canon 5D and 24-105mm f/4L IS lens. Español: El Capitolio de noche. Русский: Американский Капитолий ночью Српски / Srpski: Амерички Капитолиј ноћу Українська: Американський Капітолій уночі (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hello Ladies and Germs.

I can now tell you where I scampered off to for the last 5 days or so. Vacation!

As a vacation/5 year anniversary trip The Wife and I went to Washington DC. I didn’t really want to tell all of you ahead of time, in case one of you had any inclination to steal all my stuff. Well, not so much those of you who stop by on the regular, but this is the Interweb and anything can happen. Better safe than sorry.

I won’t give you the play by play, but I can give you the quick itinerary:

Friday: Fly out at 6:25 am (too early), museums during the day, monuments at dusk/night.

Saturday: Sleep in, Museum, walk around the White House, relatively nice dinner(it was awesome. Hollandaise sauce should be on everything. Everything.) Ghost tour, drinks at a couple of the fancy hotel bars.

Sunday: Museum, pictures, Surprise for Anniversary, Super Fancy Anniversary Dinner(Out of this world. We won’t talk about the bill, but I would venture to say, Worth it!), Capitol building night pictures.

Monday: Capitol tour, Library of Congress, Supreme Court, Kill time until flight at 9:15 10:15 because it was delayed(too late)

My feet hurt, my legs hurt, I’m still tired and one day off work when I got back wasn’t enough but here we are! It was a lot of fun. If I get some good stories after I process I’ll make sure to relate them.

So what all did I miss? Anything?

I have to say that I think we all deserve more vacations. We all need some time to recharge the batteries. If we had more opportunities to do that, whatever you choose to do, I think we would all be a little less stressed out. It’s all cumulative, so not being able to take that time out and step back just gets more detrimental the longer we go without it.

I’m pretty guilty of never finding any time to decompress. There are lots of ways I could in my everyday life without having to go on vacation, I just don’t make the best use of my time some days.

I could disconnect from the digital world and just sit and read for fun, instead of to finish a book. I could sit on my porch with some music and a beverage(adult or otherwise) and just enjoy the fresh air. I’m sure there are more of you who don’t take time to get everything back in order.

It’s much easier to just keep pressing on. Keep moving through your day and going from one item to the next on the never ending list we all have. It’s even sometimes easier to do something mindless like flip on the television or video games, simply because stopping and thinking hat would really let you relax is too much out of the ordinary.

Just think about that the next time you feel wiped out but still find yourself doing something mindless.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

Do you think we need more vacations? Or do you find enough time to get your head clear?

Looking Forward

I’m looking forward to being a corpse.

Yoga postures Shavasana

Yoga postures Shavasana (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Corpse pose that is. (HA!)

I know I’ve talked about yoga before, and I’m trying not to make this blog all about my adventures at yoga class, but I felt like today it was particularly apropos.

The last thing that we do in yoga class is called Shavasana. It translates roughly to “Corpse Pose.” We do it to be able to relax all the muscles we’ve been using, to practice our focusing, and practice breathing. It’s typically my favorite part.

Yes, go ahead and laugh about the irony of the lazy kid’s favorite part being the part where I lay there and do nothing for 10-15 minutes. <pause for laughter> Honestly, though, what I like about it is when I am really able to focus on letting things go, fully relax my body, focus on my breathing and really find a place of peace. It’s a very centering experience.

I know at least one of you is dismissing me as being a new age hippie weirdo. I promise it’s not like that. I find that when I’m able to do what I’m supposed to do; relax my body and mind, and focus on watching those anxious thoughts flit by instead of dwelling on them, I really leave class feeling refreshed, relaxed and energized.

I’ve mentioned that I get over-anxious about my schedule. I dwell on things I have no control over. Generally the cause of most of my anxiety is inside my own head. I’ve tried meditation before, and it typically results in me falling asleep. Working out does not remove my stress because I spend the whole time thinking in silence and sweating. Which makes me anxious and sweaty. So yoga is the first thing that has really given me something that allows me to let go.

I’m not always able to get myself focused on my breathing and get as deeply relaxed as I would like to, but I’ve been doing better. I’m really trying to make the effort to do this correctly. So for those of you keeping track, I have stuck with this for nearly a month(freaking unheard of), I’m putting effort into doing it properly(generally I just keep doing it however I usually do it), and I’m enjoying the time I spend doing these.

I’m telling you, if you have trouble finding something to help you shake off the troubles of the everyday grind, yoga or meditation might work out for you. Not trying to force anyone, but It has made a difference for me, and I’m not known for making big changes. I’m a Taurus after all.

Well, after all that, I’ve had a shitty couple days, so I’m really looking forward to spending 10 minutes or so acting like a corpse. If this turns into a zombie movie, I am going to be highly disappointed.

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Are you looking forward to anything relaxing? Got anything to help you decompress on the horizon?