Thursday, October 17, 2019

Trying to make it to Friday, unironically

Wednesday: 45 minutes sitting
Thursday: 45 minutes sitting

I swear, working so hard for so long just breaks your brain somehow. I’ve had just a normal amount of work all this week, but the weekend was an absolute, you-don’t-need-to-hear-the-details nightmare that capped off three straight weeks of long workdays, and there’s no doubt in my mind that what I really need right now is a few days off, and soon.

I’m sure I would have been able to figure this out anyway, but sitting down to try to meditate really makes a broken brain come into sharp focus.

I’m assuming the meditation time is a force for good here, but it’s also a lot of mental work, and sort of exhausting. I’m thinking about breaking the session up into shorter chunks for a few days to see if that seems more manageable while I try to recuperate.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

In the eye of the storm

Thursday: 40 minutes sitting
Friday: 40 minutes sitting
Saturday: 10 minutes(?) lying in bed
Sunday: 40 minutes sitting
Monday: 40 minutes sitting
Tuesday: 40 minutes sitting

I had a horrifyingly bad day in the middle there—there was a computer issue compounding a deadline issue, and I spent all day figuring out how to fix the former when I needed to be working on the latter. I realized at 10 p.m., just as things were finally getting sorted out, that I still hadn’t gotten around to meditating, but since 10 p.m. is already at least an hour past my bedtime, I knew it was pointless. I did what I could to avoid writing a 0 up there.

I have another big deadline on the horizon, but I’m hoping now for a week or two of relative calm (and real weekends) before things get stupid again.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Keeping it together

Tuesday: 40 minutes sitting
Wednesday: 40 minutes sitting

All my clients insist on continuing to send me work, even though I was maxed out about four projects ago. I’ve already said no where I can (thanks but no thanks, Grumpy!) and pushed back several of the proposed deadlines. Now, due to basically never leaving my desk, I think it’s just possible I might be able to deliver for everyone—but only if the influx stops immediately.

So that’s the situation, and it’s notable to me that I’ve been just steadily working through it all, prioritizing appropriately, without panicking or getting overwhelmed. (I mean, I am overwhelmed, but not emotionally.)

I’m just a baby meditator in the grand scheme of things, but I think I’m seeing the fruits of doing a serious, sustained practice versus doing the five-minutes-a-day practice I’ve seen recommended in self-help books.

I’m still waiting for acquaintances to remark on how calm and enlightened I am all the sudden, but maybe that’s just because I never leave my house in order to see any of my acquaintances.

Monday, October 7, 2019

Work mode

Saturday: 40 minutes sitting
Sunday: 40 minutes sitting
Monday: 40 minutes sitting

I probably technically don’t have time to write anything, but you can’t work ALL day, even with a giant book deadline, concurrent with two less-giant deadlines this week that need to be worked into the cracks. Everything I do now counts as a “break,” including flossing my teeth and taking out the compost.

On the numbness front, Saturday was the day my right leg fell so soundly asleep that I literally couldn’t move it. I had to flop over onto my stomach and belly-crawl until it was straight enough to regain feeling. Sunday went much better, and today was somewhere in between.

And I’ve worked 27 hours now since Saturday morning; the book I have due for Happy is going to take a minimum of 27 more, but that could go much higher if I want to do a better job. (Happy’s industry prioritizes speed over perfection.)

It’s an easy decision not to jump up to 45 minutes of meditation anytime soon.

Friday, October 4, 2019

The gym situation

Wednesday: 40 minutes sitting
Thursday: 40 minutes sitting
Friday: 40 minutes sitting (in a chair)

I quit the gym a few years ago, having decided that it wasn’t worth the money and that the bossy, competitive, appearance-focused, “no pain, no gain” attitude there was not really my style. But this summer I wanted a place to swim that wouldn’t require me to get up at the crack of dawn and then freeze to death while embarrassing my son, so I took advantage of a special they were having to join from May through August.

It was nice to have a place to swim and really nice to rejoin my favorite yoga classes for a few months, but mostly I reconfirmed to myself that it’s really not worth the money. So I’m a nonmember once again, but I’ve hit on a great way to have the best of both worlds: Since my mom is a member, she can bring me in as a guest for $5. I’ve been arranging to have her bring me in at 9 a.m. on Friday to go to my favorite yoga class—and then because the guest pass is good for 24 hours, I get up around 7:30 on Saturday morning to swim. So I get to go twice a week for $20 a month. That’s like 90 percent of what I would have done with a regular $60-a-month membership anyway, so the math works out favorably.

I don’t know why I even decided to mention all this on my meditation blog, except that it’s part of my “training” to sit and also I’m really tired right now from yoga this morning. :)

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

In training

Tuesday: 40 minutes sitting

Getting up to 40 minutes feels like a big accomplishment! It will be good to hit the magic* number of 45, though, so I can stop increasing the time for a while. My main challenges are physical—it is just hard to sit up straight on the floor for so long, plus my legs are still falling asleep. Of course I am adapting—I have basically the same issues I started with, but instead of appearing at, like, minute 9, they appear at minute 32.

I was thinking about how I could work on the physical aspects of meditation, so I used the trick of asking my pretend internal life coach. She wisely said, “You have to train for this $#!+,”** so there you go: an exciting new incentive to work on my core strength, hip flexibility, and overall health.***

* Magic meaning that’s what the book says my minimum should be (but I’m allowed to get there in my own time).
** Remembering fondly how my mom used to read me the comics when I was very little, and every time she encountered one of those symbols-as-swear-words constructions that show up so often, she would say, “blankety-blank.”
*** As if being blankety-blank 48 wasn’t reason enough.