This evening I've spent almost an hour in quiet contemplation of what I might next post here. I decided it would be how wonderful that feels, to have come to a place where I can slowly and calmly contemplate life (or anything!)
In 1982, I began college. I had three babies at the time. Patrick was 4, Bethany 2 1/2, and Neil one. One morning as I prepared to leave, my niece (who babysat) commented on how my hands were shaking. This was the first time I remember someone else consciously noticing and mentioning that fact that I was becoming more and more familiar with. We put it down to too much coffee.
Over the years the shaking hands became a trademark of my anxiety. Whenever any situation began to make me uncomfortable or upset, it was very clearly seen in my shaky hands. As it became more prevalent, so did my fear that my emotional discomfort was "showing all over me". And indeed it was.
Last week, while visiting my therapist and discussing just "what" we might work on... he was quick to notice my shaking hands and state of anxiety. His response was to begin with teaching me diaphragmatic breathing. This is where you breathe from you belly, using the diaphragm, rather than from the chest. Oh my Goodness! What a difference this has made for me this week!
Diaphragmatic breathing is also a known practice in meditation and yoga, so some may already be well aware of it. If you're not, and interested in more info, check out the link above and also the following link, from a Yoga site: http://www.swamij.com/diaphragmatic-breathing.htm. But I warn you on this one, there a quite a few pictures of the interior of the body, which made me a little uncomfortable. But then I'm squeamish... Maybe others aren't... and the info is great.
So, that is one thing that I believe has helped lead to this state of calm quiet. The other is a set of meditation CDs that I bought. These are not your normal meditation tapes of guided imagery or light music. These CDs actually incorporate light background sound designed to balance brain waves to help you reach the various states associated with meditation and sleep (or pre-sleep).
Always a little bit skeptical when it comes to advertised products, I was somewhat unsure of whether I believed the product could or would, in fact, deliver what it claimed. I have no basis of "proof" to offer you, other than the fact (which for me is huge) that I have noticed a very clear difference in how I "feel" throughout the day. I am much more calm and relaxed. When worries or other such thoughts enter my mind, and the potential for anxiety is there, I am able to return back to calm quickly and easily.
I enjoy the CDs, which are actually the sound of running, cascading water, such as from a rain storm or from a brook or small waterfall. If you'd like to check them out for yourself, the website is:
All I can say is: How wonderful it feels to have spent an hour in slow, deliberate, calm, and quiet contemplation of what this blog entry might be, rather than frantic scattered thoughts.
And now, it's time for bed and a relaxed sleep...
I hope your day was good, and if not, that tomorrow will be.... awesome!