Anyone who has taken a yoga class can vouch that after a long and deep practice, one of the most relaxing (and well-deserving) poses at the end of the class is Savasana, or Corpse Pose. You are on your back looking like a comfortable starfish, and point of this pose is release. Release any tension in your muscles and let your body sink into the earth below it. However, the hard part is not the physical, but the mental. Release thought from your mind. No thinking. As someone who’s trains of thought leave the station at rapid speed, this is the hardest thing for me to do, to meditate and clear my mind.
Every class, I wind up going through a similar experience:
Me during Savasana: Clear your mind. Clear your mind. Clear your mind… Repeating clear your mind is thinking. Stop thinking…. *inhale… *exhale… *inhale… *exhale… You haven’t emailed Vivian about the meeting for Steven yet. I bet she’s emailed your now. You have to email her. Annnnd I’ve probably missed a call from Susan again. Always. Every time. Stop it! Blank! *inhale….*exhale… *inhale… *exhale……… I wonder what I should have for dinner tonight… maybe pasta? Or soup? I still have some stock from this weekend. Ehhh its too warm for that right now. No soup. Stop thinking! Clear your mind. Look at the black…. *inhale… *exhale…………………… Should today be a cheat day? I went to yoga today so that counts as a good day. Do I deserve pasta? Screw it, I always deserve pasta. I don’t have onions. Or garlic. I’ll run to Wegmans after work. Oh. Toilet paper. Remember toilet paper. And napkins. Darn it, time to sit up.
Does anyone else do this? I hope I’m not the only one…Hi, my name is Becca, and I am a perpetual list maker. For me, to-do lists are hard to ignore. Lists for today, for the month, for the year, groceries. self-development, job opportunities, wines to try, anything. I’ll make a list of it.My mother drilled into me since I was little that there was always something to do and that one should never be idle. If you are smart, you’ll have the next two things already in your mind before you finish your current task. As great at this advice is, it makes it that much harder to be present in what you are participating in the now.
The one thing I do to try and keep this from happening is keep a list of today’s to-do’s every morning. What do I have to get done today? If there are things I didn’t get to yesterday, I’ll just move them to today’s list. This at least helps get them out of my head before I go insane. But sometimes just seeing all the times you have to do on paper becomes daunting and I get anxious from a huge list. Which, in turn, makes it even more difficult to begin crossing off points on the list.
So, I divy up the list to must do’s ASAP, sometime today, and whenever I get the chance in the next week. That at least makes it less stressful for me. This method has worked so far. However, savasana is one of those moments where I just can’t help myself. It’s a work in progress, but just telling someone to clear their mind is much easier than just doing it, especially for a few minutes.
How do you manage your to-do lists, and how do you stay present? I’d love to hear your methods and try something new 🙂