Meditate

Advice to myself: Meditate while the water for the coffee is boiling. Sit wrapped in a blanket, palms open, eyes closed.  Focus on the breath coming in and out of my nose. Relax my face. Notice I’m thinking of marathon runners from Kenya who have relaxed faces even in the final miles. Wonder how they accomplish such mastery of the self. Let the runners go. Return to breath. Notice I’m thinking of that thing that pisses me off. Return to breath. Notice I’m thinking about Peaky Blinders. Let Alfie Solomon go, crazy as he is. Return to breath. Notice I’m calmer…

Holiday Recovery in 5 Steps

1. Have a glass of water. Drink it all at once.  Fill up the glass. Drink that one too. Feel my internal organs say thank God she’s stopped eating for a second. 2.  Yoga. Go to a class. Or set my timer for twenty minutes and do ten sun salutations. If I don’t know what those are, look them up.  Then do a warrior pose, sit ups and happy baby. Try a few pushups and feel surprised by the ability to do them.  Or to even move at all. 3.  Meditate. Set my timer for five minutes and sit there with…

14 Thousand Things

There is a book called 14 Thousand Things to Be Happy About. I wish I thought of that idea first, to write all the things that make me happy and submit it to a publisher. I have my students do this journal activity once in a while. Write down the things that make you happy. Then Oprah overheard me and called it a Gratitude Journal. Dang. Dr. Emmons, a psychologist at UC Davis, has conducted studies for years that have shown that gratitude is good for us. All those years in the eighties and early nineties that I spent venting my angst in…