M Life meditations: part one

To say that life has been a little hectic recently is somewhat of an understatement. And we know that we’re not dealing with the worst that the pandemic has to ‘offer’. Our support and sympathy go out to those who are facing hardship or trauma because of the lockdown and COVID-19.

When we can, we’ve tried to (mostly) stay calm and collected by practising visualisations and mediations to see us through some of our more trying of moments and difficult days.

In case these methods are helpful, and bring solace and peace to our M Life community, over the next few weeks the M Life journal will be dedicated to a four-part miniseries entitled ‘M Life mediations’, essentially the mental techniques and thought sequences we’ve tried and tested to help deal with busybrains and worrisome minds. The aim is to bring us back to ourselves and re-prioritise our concerns.

Part one in our four-part series is a short and easily replicable meditation we like to call ‘The Stream’. It’s a saving grace in any setting, surrounding and during testing times.


The Stream

Five to ten minute meditation (depending on level of stress and time available)

1) Hold the image of a stream, brook or gently flowing river in the mind. This can be a familiar spot or an idealised place. Concentrate on the image as intently as possible, closing the eyes if this is useful

2) Consider the banks of the stream. There are typically bushes or trees lining the stream. Take note of these bushes or trees, particularly the leaves. If the banks of the stream are bare, imagine there is at least one tree or shrub, ideally with large leaves, the shapes of which can be made out clearly when conjuring this image in the mind.

3) Think of one or more (but no more than four) worries, concerns, anxious feelings or fears. Try to hold these and the image of the bank of the stream in the mind at the same time.

4) Continue to visualise the stream and imagine that several leaves (they should match the number of feelings or fears) start to fall from the tree
into the stream or river. Now imagine the negative thoughts or feelings are on or represented by the leaves falling into the stream.

5) Watch the leaves slowly fall and land in the water, which continues to trickle quietly and soothingly away. In this mind image, watch as the leaves float away down the stream and out of sight, taking the fears, worries or concerns away with them. Take as long as is needed to visualise this scene and repeat the exercise until feelings of anxiety start to subside.