The Interior Design Benefits of Meditating

Yesterday I hit Day 45 in my meditation streak. The streak was inspired in part by the utter randomness my meditation practice had become and in part by a meditation workshop I participated in on December 2. The last time I meditated for as many days in a row was in 2015.

For this streak, I’ve asked myself to sit for at least 10 minutes every day, which means that for about 40 of the days I’ve sat for … 10 minutes.

I’m tempted to judge myself for the shortness, but hey, I’ve been meditating regularly and so I’m less prone to!

Have I achieved a higher level of consciousness? Am I having deeper thoughts now? If I am, then I should have noticed. After all, I am supposed to notice the thoughts I’m having (and, of course, then allow them to float past without attachment). Our workshop leader instructed us not only to notice our thoughts, but also to notice our noticings.

Here’s the highlight reel of this morning’s thoughts-while-meditating: I should replace the woven wool blanket that’s wrapped around this pillow I’m sitting on. The blanket has so many loops of pulled yarn and holes from my cat, who died almost 7 years ago. I still miss him. I can let the blanket go. But my mother made it. Well, I could replace the blanket with one of the quilts she’s made me, which would be aesthetically more pleasing, even though I can’t see it while I’m meditating. I’m noticing that I’m thinking about my meditation set up. Let the thought go. Oh, I could use the quilt that used to be on my bed, because now I have a duvet. I really love the Boll and Branch sheets on my bed. Nice sheets feel so yummy. Those sheets at that Airbnb in Paris were crap. Scratchy. Or is sticky a better word? I should get a Boll and Branch duvet cover. Oh right, I can’t. I tried that and it doesn’t fit the CocoMat brand duvet. Why do I keep forgetting that? Well I could replace the duvet, too and put it on the guest bed. That bedspread is pretty old and not even bleach is getting out all the stains now. I’m noticing that I’m thinking about bedding. Really? What? Is that the gong to signal the end of the meditation? I didn’t hear the interval bells … Oh, I guess I can stop meditating now.

The thing is, even in the midst of all these unZen thoughts, I feel pretty good. Like maybe I do have a bit more space in my mind. Less like I’m pushing against life.

This morning I was out cross-country skiing after a big snow storm here in the Sierra Mountains. The only sounds werethe shush of my skis and the phoomff of big clumps of snow falling off the Jeffrey pines and Red firs. Halfway through I realized I was in a bit of a trance, feeling the quiet inside my moving sweat-warm body and enjoying the little thrill of cold air under my arms through the open pit-zips of my jacket. The ski had become a moving meditation.

I’d like to keep my sitting meditation streak up for a while longer. Maybe I will find more of that meditative energy and strength in my workouts.  Maybe I’ll figure out some other small interior design issues.

 

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