Yesterday, ended Week 4 of the 8-Week Mindfulness and Mediation Program; and, I am half-way to the finish line.
The practices for Week 4:
- Ten minutes of the Breathing Anchor Meditation for six days;
- Ten minutes of the Compassionate Acceptance meditation for six days;
- Analyze Pacing Diary
- Habit Releaser, Make Peace with Gravity
In addition to the two required meditation practices, I continued the Body Scan Meditation from Week 1.
Breathing Anchor Meditation
I was introduced to this meditation in Week 2; and the repeat in Week 4, Though still a work-in-progress, I am growing in the awareness of my breath as it flows through the body. And, I am using my breath to calm the body and ease pain.
Compassionate Acceptance Meditation
This meditation as well as the assigned readings, introduced me to the author’s concept of the difference between:
- Primary Suffering – the actual unpleasant sensations to the body; and
- Secondary Suffering – the additional pain when we react and dwell on the actual unpleasant sensations.
They believe that:
“Secondary Suffering is often the greatest source of distress … mindfulness training helps you to reduce or completely overcome it by accepting the things you cannot change, Primary Suffering. and changing those you can, the Secondary Suffering.”
As a chronic pain sufferer and having connected with many others with this condition, both personally and professionally, I tend to agree with the authors on this.
Analyze Pacing Diary
My Pacing Diary got derailed with unplanned activities and unexpected visitors. As a result, all that I planned to do, didn’t get done. Initially, I experienced some degree of anxiety and stress. But, Week 4’s readings and meditation practices guided me to understanding that this was Secondary Suffering, which was within my power to change.
Through on-going mindfulness and meditation practices, I hope to let go of being “obsessive and rigid” about completing planned tasks.
When I started this 8-week program, I didn’t factor in all of my activities over the summer months, specifically, out-of-town visitors and out-of-town vacation travels, which not end until after Labor Day. Because of this, I decided to let go of the commitment to post weekly about my journey to manage and control my chronic pain condition through this mindfulness and meditation program.
I will continue to do the readings and meditation practices. I plan to complete the program within the eight weeks. If things go as planned, I will share the key points of the final four weeks in a post that I hope to publish between mid-September and early-October.
Also, I plan to regularly post on my blog, over the summer, with the new awareness of not being “obsessive and rigid.”
Habit Releaser – Make Peace with Gravity
The authors write:
“Every time you pull away from your body in an attempt to avoid feeling it, you’re unconsciously creating more suffering, strain, and exhaustion. It only makes your pain or stress worse.
I have been pretty successful in getting beyond mental or emotional pain by being still, breathing and giving into gravity. But, still a work-in-progres when it comes to physical pain.
Thank you for joining me on this journey and I look forward to sharing my final four weeks with you in the fall. A special thank you to the imanikingblog for allowing me to use Freedom Friday as the platform to document my journey.