Last night I posted a 10 minute video by one of the creators of Headspace, Andy Puddicombe. I have had this guy in my ear every day for the last 30 days – through the wonders of the internet and smart phones, Andy is teaching me to meditate.
I came to Headspace and meditation because Denny discovered it through his CrossFit quests. He had just started it, and I think he knew I needed it. Why? Because I was stressed out. Between work, fitness, kids and the normal pressures that we all feel, I was getting run down. It was effecting my sleep and effecting my well being. I was searching for ways to help me slow down – basically relax. Denny suggested Headspace, and like my start of CrossFit, I tried it immediately.
Here’s how you can start – download the Headspace app. It’s free and provides you with 10 guided 10 minute meditations led by Andy.
Now, I have tried meditation before. This is the truth – I tried meditation because of Star Wars and Batman and Daredevil did it in the comics. I guess I was trying to be a Jedi or something. Newsflash – I am not a Jedi.
What I really needed was a coach for meditation, and Headspace provided that. In the first 10 meditations, there are videos that accompany a few of the meditations that begin to teach the concepts that Headspace is teaching – those concepts are Mindfulness and Awareness. After the first 2 meditations, I was definitely interested, but a video accompanied number 3, entitled “Expectation” and it was like a lightbulb went off. The subsequent meditations were preceded by more animation teaching more lessons on Effort, and more Mindfulness concepts.
As I went through the meditations, more lightbulbs were going off, I found relaxation was becoming easier. It’s not easy, and it doesn’t happen overnight and the lessons come slow. But for me, I knew I was overwhelmed with thoughts, information and just stuff. Taking the time to try to literally think of nothing takes practice. But seeing as millions, maybe billions of people use meditation reminds me it is a lifetime pursuit, learning and growing, much like CrossFit.
Here are some basic thoughts on Headspace.
It is not religion. Although through some research, the concepts of Mindfulness are from Buddhism, and Andy was a Buddhist Monk, it is devoid of any religion. It is just you and your mind.
After 10 days, you need to subscribe. This opens you to the 20 more meditations that make up the foundations and an “on the go” series. Short meditations on subjects such as walking, cooking and my favorite, sleep, are there once you subscribe. Once you complete the foundations pack, many more themed meditations become available. It’s about $100 if you sign up for a year, or $12 for a month.
Find a good supportive chair if possible. I started sitting crossed legged, and my legs would fall asleep. This can be distracting – although Andy addresses the subject of discomfort in later meditations – but a supportive chair is best for me. Noting too comfortable, because you may fall asleep.
Ultimately, Headspace is about being more present in your own life. If you find your mind is always working, thinking of other things, it may be something you should try.
Workout of the Day
20 Wallball Shots 20/14
20 Power Snatch 75/55
20 minute cap
In the remaining time, build to a heavy Hang Snatch