Strategies – rest

Strategy to get better quality rest – meditate when I can. That is, when the neighbours are out so there’s no background “Don’t wanna get dressed” toddler tantrum going on (her Mama is remarkably patient, but also gets a bit shouty herself at times). I dare say a master meditation practitioner could serenely and compassionately allow the noise to just be, but I’m not that enlightened. At best it disturbs my repose, at worst it triggers a toddler-like temper tantrum of my own. As I’m a grown up and have to behave myself in the interests of neighbourly diplomacy and general dignity, I can’t scream “Shut the fuck up” through the wall, much as I’d like to at times. So I seethe instead.

I’ve been trying to allow myself to loosen up on my control-freakery and go with the flow a bit more over the last few months. It finally dawned on me the other day that sulking because I can’t always meditate peacefully when I choose to and therefore never meditating at all is a bit, well, childish. Stupid, even. I can analyse the reasons why I behave like that until the cows come home. Which might be interesting, but won’t actually change anything.

It’s time to do something different. So instead of setting a rigid goal of mediating for 20 minutes first thing every morning  and getting angry when it’s disturbed, then giving up altogether, I’ve softened the target. My new strategy is to meditate for up to 20 minutes in the mornings when the neighbours go out early. On other days, I will endeavour to have a session if an opportunity presents itself. Maybe Miss Grumpy next door is doing me a favour by forcing me to examine and change some old, self-defeating behaviour patterns!

Regular meditation helps my night-time sleep (which is dreadful at the moment), helps me cope better with anxiety and is, when successful, a pleasant interlude. There are other things I could do to improve the quality of my rest, but another strategy is to tackle one thing at a time…

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