Ahh, the benefits of meditation. Peace of mind, serenity, the lowering of blood pressure, pain management and the list goes on. It is a valuable skill that is worthy of acquiring.
Yet, if you are in the midst of chaos the well-intentioned suggestion of “You need to meditate” is falling on fallow ground! Now, I know there are some reading this with their mouth agape, thinking all kinds of thoughts about how wrong I am. That’s fine but open your mind and continue to read.
When someone is in a crisis or dealing with a chronic crisis situation they are in fight or flight mode or the beloved Triple F Reflex I so often bring up. Just so we are on the same page, Triple F Reflex = Fight, Flight and Freeze. They perceive whatever is happening as a threat to them, physically and/or mentally/emotionally, sometimes consciously and many times subconsciously.
Maybe, they should be shown how to get out of the emotional or mental stress that they are in and when they have mastered that skill, move on to meditation which can assist them in avoiding activating the Triple F Reflex as a go to response.
Not convinced? Are you familiar with “give a man a fish, feed him for day, teach a man to fish and feed him for a lifetime?” Well, if that same man is on the point of passing out due to lack of nutrition and his body is cannibalizing itself to survive, how helpful is that lesson on fishing in the moment? It’s not! Give the poor man something to eat then once he is out of crisis mode, teach him to fish so he can avoid the situation in the future.
Alright, here is a little tool that you can use when you need to get out of crisis mode.
Buddha Breath or Belly Breathing
This is really simple, just breathe from your belly instead from your chest!
- Place one or both hands on your belly, on or near your belly button.
- Exhale and push with your hands and pull with the belly muscles, your belly towards your spine.
- Inhale deeply and let your belly fill with air. Belly expands and hands are pushed away from the spine.
- Exhale and contract the belly muscles and pull the belly to the spine. Just notice that the hands are moving towards the spine.
- Repeat this for 2 to 5 minutes.
- Notice how you feel? Most feel more relaxed, centered, etc.
And guess what? This can pull you into meditating – finding the stillness within.