Behind my brow, there’s a virtual manuscript that my mind starts to read and attach to when I’m “trying” to be still. Sometimes during those few minutes before sleep when I’m laying down with my eyes closed or when I’m sitting in silence to meditate, there’s a full editorial meeting involving checklists, drama, and fictitious scenarios at work that my mind plays out. It loves the activity, the intrigue, the thought movement. My brain can flip through the pages with vigor.
Sometimes the manuscript turns into a full fledged movie, and my brain gets sucked in like a kid in front of a television. Even as this is happening, I’m observing like a producer, and another voice sneaks in the back door and says, “hey we should be meditating here.”
Throughout my life, I’ve struggled with mind-made movies that inevitably result in anxiety, worry, fear, or guilt. As life is an ever evolving work in progress, I still experience this now and again. If I’m not careful to bring my awareness back to my breath, back to the moment, I can go down a “Watership Down” sized rabbit hole that leaves me exhausted with a headache. I have the subtle crease in my brow from years of furrowing to show for it.
What’s a yogini to do? Accept and surrender. Accept with open arms who you are, mental checklists and all, and listen. Surrender to the present moment without expectation or interpretation, and sit with the feelings that you’re experiencing. Without closing your eyes, scrunching your brow and trying to disappear and avoid the feelings and activity, be with it. Skip the Xanax, skip the escape and surrender.
If thoughts come in, imagine that they are clouds floating in and out of your mind independent of you. You are not your thoughts. You are not the manuscript.
– Your Charmed Yogi
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