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Why (on earth) would we get closer to stuff that we want to get away from? RUH course Week 4

The steadfastness we develop in meditation is a willingness to stay. It may seem silly, but meditation actually isn’t too unlike training a dog!

We learn to stay.

Pema Chödrön, “Making Friends with Oneself”

This is my second blog from the mindful journey of this amazing group of RUH Registrants…….

We are all pretty used to online training now, but I’m still blown away by fact that this works so well on Zoom. Sure, we miss the sense of physical presence; and yes, it’s pretty difficult to connect with body language. But, but, but - if we are patient and begin to practice our mindful listening and speaking, we can still connect authentically and powerfully in this on-screen space and share the benefits of our practice.

This week was the half way point. We are starting to explore things that we find difficult - opening up to them as best we can; exploring them with curiousity and kindness; looking with ‘new eyes’ at our experience; sensing how it feels in the body on a moment to moment basis.

So, why do we look more closely and feel the stuff that we really want to get away from? Mindfulness is full of paradoxes. Aren’t there so many things in life that are just inescapable - or are at least unavoidable in the moment that we are in? By learning to stay steady and lean in closer to the thoughts, feelings and sensations in our experience, we can begin to see our moments more clearly, to ‘get to know them’ and from this, different, place begin to find ways to support ourselves in ways that serve us better than our strategies to date.

And here are a few of their 'halfway through the course observations:

  • Mindfulness is challenging! But so beneficial, feel like it’s helping me diffuse some of my anxieties (especially in work place)

  • (There are) Lots of different ways to be mindful.

  • Mindfulness is challenging but good that brings some positivity

  • Helps to overcome anxiety and give confidence. and also encourage to be motivated

  • The mind wandering is normal and acceptable, it can just be noticed.

  • The challenge is making it part of my daily routine, like exercise, preparing meals etc.

  • Mindfulness is challenging but good and brings positivity.

Mindfulness is a path to a radically different way of living our lives. So, let’s take a respectful Pause for this current group who are ‘learning to stay’.

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