Meditation: Priceless Gifts for Free

I hate to admit this, but I’ve been neglecting my meditation practice lately, big time. I’ve allowed myself to become “too busy.”  The result?  Well, let’s just say that I haven’t been my usual joyful self. I gave myself an inner boost this morning, though, and it made such a difference that I felt inspired to share.

Here are just some of the benefits you might receive in a 20-minute meditation:

  • Be reminded that your life is not about the outside world and all its complications.
  • Experience a sense of privilege to have been given the opportunity to live.
  • Feel closely connected with the energy behind all of life.
  • Remember how you are really supposed to show up.
  • Become refreshed with a deep sense of peace and joy

Would you agree that this list of benefits reads like a seminar you might pay hundreds of dollars for?

Meditation is free. Here’s a great wikiHow article to help you get started.

I’d love to hear your comments on what meditation has done for you.

Emotional Support for the Unemployed

This past Friday a recently laid-off Silicon Valley engineer fatally shot three former co-workers, including the CEO. This brutal incident of workplace violence was just one that makes up 20% of all violent crimes as reported by the San Jose Mercury News.

What does this workplace violence statistic say?

Violence is a product of anger and fear. While the motive of this particular killer remains unknown, the story suggests a couple of theories:

  1. Anger over the job loss
  2. Fear of financial insecurity
  3. Anger or fear over loss of identity without a job

Our nation is now grappling with the toughest unemployment rate in 14 years. The U.S. Labor Department reported that 1.2 million people have lost their jobs this year. With October producing 240,000, the total number is likely to surpass 1.5 million by the end of the year.

How can we support the emotions of the unemployed? Having lost a paycheck myself, I empathize with the fears about money and carving out the next gig. Yet a job transition can be viewed as an invitation to revisit what really matters at the end of each of our lives:

How well did you use your talents and expertise and develop your inner potential?

Give yourself permission to trust in the good of the universe. Look at losing your job as a message that:

  • Your talents and expertise are no longer needed at that company.
  • You are being freed so that you can contribute to a company that needs you more.

As a nation we can look at the vast number of jobs being lost as a message that:

  • We need to shift the focus of our work force to jobs that better contribute to what our country needs now.

Our new President is not responsible for initiating change. The unemployment situation demonstrates that change is happening now and we are all involved in the process. Unfortunately, change is often uncomfortable at first. Yet trust in the good of the universe and believe that you will arrive in a better place once you land.

The Gloom and Doom Bandwagon: Are You On or Off?

The Marin Independent Journal, my local newspaper, featured a front page article on Sunday by Associated Press journalist, Pauline Arrillaga with the headline, Gloom, Doom Around the Nation. The article’s focus was on how high gas prices, the never-ending war, the housing market, and job uncertainty has brought our country to a point of hopelessness and fear.

I opened my newspaper to page 7 to follow the article, feeling more troubled as I read statements shared by a number of people interviewed. Then what was shared by a 24-year old brought tears to my eyes, “You can’t get ahead. You can’t save money. You can’t buy a house. It just stinks.”

It wasn’t the state of the Union that bothered me here; it was the sense of hopelessness that seems to prevail. Have we forfeited our power as we wait for the next President to get things moving in a new direction? What can we do in the meantime?

How to take control of your life:

  1. Acknowledge what you want to achieve or become
  2. Define the steps necessary to get there.
  3. Acknowledge your responsibility for completing the steps.
  4. Commit to and follow through on the work.
  5. Stay committed to what is necessary.

This process enables you to take control, regardless of what is happening around you. Remember that your power lies within you. It’s your gift waiting to be claimed. That’s when life gets good. Go for it.