As the founder and editor of "Meditate Like a Girl," a dynamic and oh, so fun blogazine, I love to share my thoughts on contemplative practices and what works to keep me calm, clear and wise—no matter what!
I post 2-3 times a month there; content different than what you might find here on this blog.
I just posted a reflection I call, "Just Breathe," which explains, despite my trying on dozens of contemplative practices and meditation forms for size, I always come back to my breath. Breath is my salvation—literally and metaphorically.
I invite you to take a sacred pause and learn how your breath can be your saving grace in day-to-day life too!
"Create Sacred Space in Your Home and In Your Heart," one of 4 Sacred Living tele-seminars I'll be offering this year, is this week.
Wednesday, April 2. 7-9:00 p.m. ET.
Cultivate new ways of seeing, as well as practices for connecting with the Holy in the ordinary, all within the four walls of your home. Learn how to turn your current "mundane" space into sacred space; to make the space you live in one that nourishes you—body, mind, heart and soul. Learn more and register.
And if you can't join me "Live" on Wednesday, enroll anyway! You'll receive all the materials (MP3, handouts, step-by-step instructions, and Guided Meditations) to use at your leisure when you're ready for transformation!
I often felt claustrophobic as a child. When the space was too small, when there was too much "stuff" in it, I felt like I wanted to crawl out of my skin.
Today, I just so happen to like small spaces, so I've grown out of my childish ways. But I still can't deal with too much "stuff." I like my living spaces neat and tidy—not compulsively so—just balanced. Upon closer look you might even find a dust bunny or two lurking in the corners. Dust particles, yes. Piles of stuff, no.
Here's why. I like to feel "clear" inside of myself, as if the doors and windows are open for "the new" to enter freely, and for what needs to leave to exit without struggle. Or impediment. Or tripping over too much inner furniture ...
I am also a highly creative person. There are a myriad of ideas that go through my mind each day, and if there is a lot of "stuff" inside of me, this can't happen. The ideas get all tangled up and stuck in dark messy corners.
What I've noticed over the years is that having my exterior space clutter-free keeps my mind clutter-free too. When piles start to build and stuff stacks up on counter tops and dressers, my mind gets discombobulated—agitated at times, sluggish at others.
Keeping my home space clear feels like a sacred act to me. It is also an act of good self-care. As I take care of my home, I am taking care of my mind—and especially my ability to create.
Zen teacher, John Daido Loori, described the importance of such sacred space this way:
"The sacred space within your household is the heart of everything else that follows. That space doesn't need to be elaborate. It's just a place that you can go to that creates a kind of attitude of mind that's conducive to centering yourself and coming home to your practice."
It's nearly Spring in the northern hemisphere. The perfect time to re-examine your personal space. When you take a closer look at it, how does it make you feel?
Welcoming or closed off? Openhearted or shut down? Creative or stagnant?
Your personal space is truly a reflection of the inner you. And discovering and expressing the inner you--your truest sacred self—is what life is all about.
Beginning with going through that stack of papers in the corner. And the drawer that keeps getting stuck because there are too many utensils in it. Or the closet in which you can't seem to find anything ...
Clear your space. Rededicate it. Make it sacred. Find your true self again.
Join me on on Wed. April 2 for a "Spiritual Health In-Venture,"Creating Sacred Space in Your Home and in Your Heart."
It's a one-of-a-kind tele-seminar to help you reclaim the Sacred in your physical space and within yourself. Every woman needs the blessing of a living environment that feels welcoming and beautiful. As women, we also need sacred space WITHIN us; an inner landscape that welcomes in the Holy. Join me for an enlivening and practical evening where we'll tend to all aspects of your "Home" so that sacred energy infuses you AND your surroundings each and every day. I hope you will join me! Learn more and read program syllabus.
Do you have a space in your home to call your own? According to author Virginia Woolf, every woman needs two things: her own money and her own room. There are tremendous benefits to carving out a space of your own. I am sure we would all love our own rooms, filled to the brim with the hues, scents and items we truly love. This would be an ideal situation: to create a space you can go to when the voice of solitude or self-indulgence calls. Orchestrate it so that the moment you enter, peaceful thoughts greet you. It would be the “perfect” place, not unlike a little Eden, where your whole self is surrounded by beauty.
However, in real life, most of us share spaces with partners, children, grandchildren or friends. Our spaces are full of other people's stuff, which when given a choice, we personally wouldn't have there at all.
We have to be realistic in creating a personal space for ourselves amidst the clutter of busy households. I’ve met many women who have carved out their own niche in a household that bustles with activity. One friend moved into a new house and selected a small extra bedroom for herself that she dubbed her "angel room." (Some of us have done this, but elected to call it an "office" instead.) She painted it her favorite color, filled it with her most loved books and music, endearing photos, motivational prints and fragrant candles. She goes there to renew focus or to get away from it all.
Without the luxury of an entire room, we can claim a corner or section of a room as "ours." I don't have the luxury of a room of my own, so I tend to create cozy corners for myself all through my house. For one such corner, I purchased a lovely oversized wicker chair with tapestry cushion and a reading lamp. They sit in a corner by a built-in bookshelf. I removed all of the books and started from scratch, replacing them with my personal favorites—some I’ve read, others I’ve not—books whose words give me sustenance. On top of the book-shelf, I placed scented candles, a piece of native American pottery I bought in Arizona, a carved stone that says, "Strength," and a miniature watercolor of an empowered woman by one my favorite Michigan artists. I removed the knick-knack shelf that had been there for seven years and hung a new motivational print I found in a gallery. A basketful of my favorite magazines sits by the chair. It's MY corner and I love to sit or read there. Surrounded by “chosen” things, relaxation comes more quickly. My body feels safe; I feel at home in myself and in my space.
If you do not have the luxury of a "room of your own," Virginia Woolf style, and you desire a personal haven, I would offer this suggestion:
A dresser or desktop can serve the same purpose. A small nightstand by your bed, carefully arranged with your favorite things, is good option. Even a space as small as that sends messages of self-importance and worth to you, and to those around you. Place in your space only those things that evoke positive, mood enhancing feelings or memories. Special photographs, intimate gifts and handmade items are all good choices. Keep it clean, tidy, updated—sacred.
Feel free to change and alter your personal space at your whim. Always remember that it's your personal space, created to support your spiritual well-being and no one else's. By creating personal sacred space, we are sending messages to our self that we are worthy of time, expense and attention. In doing so, we also affirm that we are sacred beings, creatures of inner peace, beauty and goodness.
©2014, Janice Lynne Lundy. All Rights Reserved. www.JanLundy.com
Join me on on Wed. April 2 for a "Spiritual Health In-Venture,"Creating Sacred Space in Your Home and in Your Heart."
It's a one-of-a-kind tele-seminar to help you reclaim the Sacred in your physical space and within yourself. Every woman needs the blessing of a living environment that feels welcoming and beautiful. As women, we also need sacred space WITHIN us; an inner landscape that welcomes in the Holy. Join me for an enlivening and practical evening where we'll tend to all aspects of your "Home" so that sacred energy infuses you AND your surroundings each and every day. I hope you will join me!
Nothing may sap our Spiritual Health more than worry. I make this statement as a result of personal experience.
For many years I was a chronic worrier. (I sometimes kiddingly say that I inherited worry genes from my father's side of the family and anxiety genes from the other, though the truth of this, it's not very funny.) Worrying debilitated me, though I didn't know it at the time. It's a horrible dis-ease to be stuck in thoughts of "What if?", playing out worst case scenarios in your head, on edge, feeling sick to your stomach, sleepless, etc. Worry takes a terrible toll on your physical and mental health; your emotional well-being too. It certainly did mine.
I am SO glad that today I rarely worry. I've learned how to break the Worry Cycle. And if I do sense myself getting caught up in worry, I know what to do to nip that baby in the bud!
Recently, I had a wonderful radio interview with Kenny Brixey of Empower Radio about worry. His show, "Life's Tool Box" is such a helpful resource, and in this show we talked about "How to Live Worry Free."
I hope you enjoy the 25 minute interview. I also hope that it will inspire you to break the habit of worrying—because you deserve so much more! You deserve a life of EXTRAORDINARY Spiritual Health and Well-Being.
How's your Spiritual Health these days? Could it use a boost or an overhaul? If you're feeling overwhelmed and out of touch with "the real you," you might need a Spiritual Health Adjustment.
I'd love to help you with this by introducing you to a bold new way of being in the world. Learn more about how you can "Create Spiritual Health" today with the aid of weekly Spiritual Health Adjustments sent directly to your Inbox.
In an increasingly complex and frustrating world,
we long for Love.
We long to know the Sacred intimately.
We seek an all-consuming relationship with the Divine
because we have been thirsty for too long,
and we have sought sustenance from many dry wells.
It is time to drink from the cup of Spirit,
allowing ourselves to become intoxicated by its sweetness,
opening our eyes to limitless beauty
and Love beyond measure.
Excerpted from Awakening the Spirit Within
I love the idea of "falling into the arms of the Divine" where there is nothing else but Love. The best way I know to accomplish this is to nourish my spirit; to let go of the should's, stop pressuring myself, and surrender into Beingness. Work and "the world" can wait, for my spiritual connection is more important than anything. What about you? Is this something you long for too? If it is, I'd love to companion you on this journey inward. Learn more.
is a touchpoint. a resting place, a "remembering" of who we really are and how we can best live—kindly and compassionately with ourselves and others.
Janice Lynne Lundy, DMin
is an educator, interspiritual director/guide and retreat leader who has been pointing people back toward the Sacred for more than twenty years. She is the author of several spiritual growth books, including Your Truest Self, My Deepest Me and Portable Peace., and is the co-founder and co-director of the Spiritual Guidance Training Institute.