Last week, I attended a Listening Deeply Workshop with The Heart Movement. It was the first live practice I’d been involved with, and was all about learning to listen to our heart and gut in response to a specific question each of us asked ourselves. I chose not to speak and to have my camera off throughout, because it didn’t feel comfortable for me, but none of that was a problem because sharing was totally voluntary throughout the session.
There were around ten or twelve other people in the call and our facilitator began the session by leading us through a quick body scan practice that focussed on ‘tidying up the home’. We started at 5:30pm and the group was really candid about their experience of the practice afterwards, some saying that they drifted off during and other sharing where they felt they held the most tension. I was actually surprised at how many veteran members of this group held up their hand and said ‘oh I totally fell asleep’ afterwards. It was kind of reassuring to know that experienced practitioners were still facing the same problems as me.
Afterwards, we went into a heart mapping exercise where we responded on paper to a question we posed to ourselves, and then checked in with our breath for a few minutes. Then we repeated the exercise, paying close attention to our intuition, breathing and heart responses. I found that the first time my answers were general concepts, and then after trying to tune in, they became a list of criteria for an ultimate solution.
If I’m being completely honest, the idea of a live session is hard for me. I’m not ready to open up to yet and probably won’t be for a long time.
The morning mindfulness session was a good balance between private and communal that I’d definitely like to join in with again.
I tried again a couple of days later, with one of the Morning Mindfulness sessions that are open to Heart Movement members Monday-Thursday, and then to everyone on Fridays. There were about thirty people in the session and again, I didn’t have my camera or mic on, but I connected with it a lot more than the Listening Deeply workshop. I had the same reaction to it that I have when I start my day with a meditation first thing, but with an added sense of community, which I really liked.
Mindfulness is something I’ve found I engage with more when I’m alone, without feeling like there’s any external expectations, but the morning mindfulness session was a good balance between private and communal that I’d definitely like to join in with again.
This is part 8 of a series entitled ‘A Sceptic’s guide to entering the World of Mindfulness’.