“Med­i­ta­tion is the ulti­mate mobile device; you can use it any­where, any­time, unob­tru­sive­ly.” ~Sharon Salzberg

I came home from my doctor’s appoint­ment last week and ram­bled off three to four dif­fer­ent things that were hap­pen­ing in the world as a result of the coro­n­avirus. By the fourth item my wife asked me to stop. She said please tell me some­thing good.

I told her that my doc­tor said my pathol­o­gy report came back neg­a­tive. That the pro­ce­dure on my neck had removed all can­cer­ous cells. (A very good thing!) We shared a hug and a smile, and then I was back on my phone look­ing to see if any­thing else had changed in the world.

If you’re any­thing like me, you’ve been glued to your phone the past cou­ple of weeks, mes­mer­ized by what’s going on. I’ve been swip­ing right (to get to the news) thir­ty to forty times per day, prob­a­bly more, and it’s been mak­ing me crazy.

Many of us are now in iso­la­tion from a virus that is chang­ing the world as we know it at incred­i­ble speed. That’s why I think it’s impor­tant to spend less time on our phones. 

Yep, you heard me cor­rect. Less time. Even if it’s just ten min­utes less per day.

Now more than ever it’s impor­tant to spend time doing some­thing that’s ground­ed in real­i­ty rather than fear and pan­ic. I’m not say­ing that what’s hap­pen­ing isn’t real, it’s very real, but a lot of us are get­ting over ampli­fied by the ridicu­lous amount of infor­ma­tion at our fin­ger­tips, and it’s tak­ing us to a place of pan­ic and fear.

That’s why I want to chal­lenge every­one to four­teen days of med­i­ta­tion. Why? Because med­i­ta­tion is ground­ed in real­i­ty.

It’s just breath­ing. Breath­ing in and out like the waves of the ocean.

It’s you expe­ri­enc­ing your thoughts for what they are—just thoughts—and then com­ing back to your breath. It’s you tak­ing a break from the crazi­ness of what’s going on and get­ting cen­tered.

I present this chal­lenge to you gen­tly because I know a lot of us have been affect­ed in one way or anoth­er. Heck, I just found out that a job I was sup­posed to start today has been pushed back for a month and a half. That’s mon­ey that my fam­i­ly was count­ing on.

I can get angry and I can scream and shout, but what good is that going to do me.? It is what it is. Instead, I can med­i­tate. How­ev­er scary it may be out there, we all have this beau­ti­ful oppor­tu­ni­ty to check in with our­selves and rise.

I’m not say­ing don’t inform your­self, but at the same time you don’t need to be glued to your phone. We have to remem­ber to put the oxy­gen mask on our­selves first. Then oth­ers. Hence this chal­lenge.

Take this time for you. Ten min­utes a day.

Put down your phone. Don’t swipe right and get sucked up into the news like I’ve been doing. Don’t turn on the TV and check out for an hour or two. Use this time, which we all have, to check in with your­self.

And who knows? Four­teen days might lead to a long-term habit—one that will make you a bet­ter per­son and make those around you bet­ter.

Imag­ine a world where all of us do this. Where we ground our­selves in real­i­ty, check­ing in with our bod­ies, and we breathe and let our bod­ies send safe­ty mes­sages to our minds rather than our minds hijack­ing our bod­ies with fear. This is the vision that kept me up most of last night.

Med­i­tate and let your body remind you that every­thing is okay. Breathe in and breathe out know­ing that right here, right now, just for this moment, every­thing is okay.

Remem­ber, we are full organ­isms. Every­thing that we are think­ing and think we are feel­ing has an asso­ci­at­ed phys­i­o­log­i­cal response. Sit with the know­ing that despite what­ev­er your mind is try­ing to tell you or what­ev­er life stress­es are com­ing your way you are com­plete­ly safe in this moment right here in your body.

I’ve nev­er asked this before but I’m ask­ing it now. Please send this on to some­one you know or share it on social media. I believe this is impor­tant to all of us right now.

Take this chal­lenge. Give your­self this gift.

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