Book Review – The Headspace Guide to Meditation

I picked Headspace Guide to Meditation because it was one of the top reads on the topic Meditation which is a part of my theme for the year which is spirituality. I didn’t have great expectations from the book as it was just going to be a repeat of what I already knew. But then I enjoyed certain parts of the book for his style of explanation and the analogies he used.

 

As I write a review of this book after almost 6 months, these are a few things which I still remember from the top of my head.

 

  1. The author lived as a monk in the Eastern side hopping from one monastery to the other choosing what works best for him. He practised meditation thoroughly before he started a profession in that. One such example he quotes based on this is, how a monk decided to leave a monastery where he was expected to do gardening 8 hours a day instead of just spending the entire day in meditation. While meditation is important, being mindful in the rest of the day plays an equally important role as not everyone can leave their lifestyle and shift to monk life. I was grateful for the validation I received for my thought process through this.
  2. There is no good or bad meditation. If you are meditating, you observe your thoughts. If you are not observing your thoughts, it is no longer meditation.
  3. Meditation is like watching vehicles pass in front of you on a highway. If you like a vehicle, you don’t start running behind it. You just acknowledge it and let it go.
  4. The mind is like the sky. Thoughts are like the clouds. There are clear sky days, there are cloudy days. There are rainy days. But the sky remains the same.
  5. In the initial days, meditation feels impossible because your mind is like a wild horse. You can’t expect to domesticate in a day. When you tame a wild horse, you should first start by reducing its running space by one diameter each day until the space becomes smaller and smaller and then finally it learns to stay in a stable.
  6. When you start staying mindful and let’s say you go on a mindful walk on the same street you have been going throughout your life, the street looks completely new. 

 

Is this book for you?

 

  • I am new to meditation
  • I need analogies and impact of meditation
  • I want to understand what monk like is like
  • I need some practice exercises on meditation

 

If you are at intermediate level, the book is more like a novel than with any practical use for you.

 

Happy Headspace!

2020 Oct Review & Nov goals

Oct has been a quite exciting month. I moved into a new house which has a beautiful view of sunrise and sunset. I automatically started waking up around 6 to get a nice view of sunrise. I never missed my remote group meditation which is at 7 am as a result of this. Since I was done with meditation and other chores by 7:30, I was able to start exercising twice a day. All this meant that I was crashing by 11 PM which is what I always wanted.

 

Review of Oct goals

 

1.Malasana

One of the best ways to feel stretch in hip flexors after butterfly pose. I will continue this as a part of my daily routine just like butterfly pose.

 

2.Self Exploration 

This didn’t happen as planned. I didn’t have a clear plan and whatever I did was not motivating enough. I have come up with a renewed plan for the month of November.

 

Plan for November

 

1.Mindful brushing 

Even though I did this a few months back, with the morning drowsiness, it got dropped. I haven’t put conscious efforts to get back to it after that. This month, I put a sticky note on my mirror which reminds me to do mindful brushing with my left hand. Since I am a right hander, doing it with my left hand not only cleans the part of the mouth which can’t be reached with my right hand but also improves creativity by activating the part of the brain which is not used much. I got myself an accountability partner and will also be journaling my experience to track the progress.

 

2.Morning pages

From the time I have started meditating, I stopped focusing on writing my diary. Now I am back with it with a bang. I have decided to write 1000 words every morning. Just whatever comes to me naturally.

 

3.Self exploration

Since this didn’t happen last time, I have a clear plan this month. I have picked up tasks from the book Artist’s way and added a date against it to give a deadline to the task. I am doing this assignment with a friend where we are going to hold each other accountable for the task and it is going to be fun to share the answers with each other.

 

How was your October? What are your plans for November?

 

Happy November!

 

Note: I have a few slots open for counselling sessions for the month of November. Mail your problem statement to lensq29@gmail.com to book your session.