Exercises For Uncovering Your Personal Style
The Rhythm of Everyday Life
Let's take a minute to recognize some elements of your personal style. Just take
a conscious break in the midst of all this reading and ask yourself some
pertinent questions. We've been talking about the importance of asking and
the magic of the answers just percolating up. So now, consider the rhythm
of your everyday life and the pace you like to move at.
• Do you like to move fast, have the feeling that lots of things are happening simultaneously?
• Do you prefer a slow, orderly pace to life?
• What rhythms turn you on? Slow and sultry? Dynamic and energetic? Lyrical and soulful?
• Is your personal aesthetic minimalistic, simple, spare? Extravagant, colorful, outrageous? Somewhere in-between?
Once you ask you'll know. Now the best advice I can ever give you is to learn to meditate without cramping your own style. It may seem odd to meditate for only half a minute and then stop to check to make sure you are not making a chore out of it or, putting pressure on yourself in any way. But by doing so you will be developing ease, rhythm, and a sense of your individual style. Then you can do longer and longer meditations and feel comfortable. Any one meditation of ten or twenty minutes is composed of many minute to minute-and-a-half cycles. A lot happens in a minute.
To keep it simple, I suggest that you approach meditation with an appreciation of movement. Attention moves, whether you want it to or not, so by accepting this in advance you will not be at war with yourself.
• If you like to move fast, the best way for you to approach meditation is quickies. Quick in and out, doing each meditation for a short period of time, so it seems like a brief but satisfying pit stop in the race course of your life.
• If you like to have a leisurely pace whenever possible, set aside a whole chunk of time, and give lots of attention to the Getting In and Getting Out phases.
• If you know you love rhythm, if you love the way your body feels in the presence of drums and a band with a great beat, play music and dance to it before you meditate. It doesn’t have to be every time, but what you’ll find is the delicious, erotic energy of the rhythm permeates your meditation and touches deep into your core.
• If you crave simplicity or silence, give it to yourself. Seek out times and places of quiet, so your nerves can thrive on the sanctuary silence gives.
• If you find yourself craving rich colors and complex imagery, experiment with meditating in a Catholic church or an art museum.
-- selection from Meditation Made Easy