It’s a typical winter day in Salt Lake City; it is 35 degrees and the smog is killing your lungs. It’s 5:30 p.m. and you’re driving home from school. The traffic is bad today, too. It seems like you have to stop at least three times before making it through the upcoming light. You’re getting frustrated.
Between lights, you hit every pothole in the road. It is like the potholes are strategically placed right in front of your tires hoping to ruin your rims or whatever they can destroy. You’re thinking, “I just want to scream. I am so tired of the holes. I am so tired of this traffic. I am so tired of winter. And the radio is not playing anything I like.”
As traffic starts to move, some moron next to you isn’t paying attention. You look over and see him playing with his phone. They almost side swipe you. And then …yes, you did it. You blurt out those words that you don’t want people to know you even thought, “A-hole.”
Could your day get any worse? I mean, you just struggled to pass that math test, you had to sit through two hours of boring lecture and you still have to go to work later. Why does your life have to be so lame?
Now, you’re sitting at another light, which seems to be taking an unusually long time to turn green. The genius idea of plugging your iPod into your stereo occurs (this is for those of you who don’t have satellite radio yet). You put on your happy music. You push play to your special theme song that immediately lifts your mood.
You start tapping your left foot, you start drumming the steering wheel and humming the tune. Now this is when you should be taking your mind to a happy place, while you’re waiting for the light to turn green.
Turn your radio up, sing louder and imagine it being a hot, sunny day. Crank the heater and crack the windows. Imagine what it feels like to open your sunroof and roll your windows down all the way. Pretend it’s a gorgeous day. Can you feel the sun’s rays heat up your skin?
The lyrics you’re singing now are loud and piercing through to your heart and your mood. You can’t wait to drive more. You’re imagining yourself driving on an open road, no speed limits, hot temperatures and your favorite music.
What were you doing just now? You were escaping reality so you could survive that painful drive home.
In my own words, this is effective meditation. Meditation puts you in a different place to help you relax, regroup and get control of your thoughts once again. It’s important. Meditation should be something that we turn to when we are about to explode. Some sit quietly, some write, some listen to music. There are many ways to meditate. Just do what’s best for you.
The power of your thoughts is unbelievable. If you learn to control those thoughts and use them in a positive way, you will find more joy in the things that are not enjoyable. Are you taking advantage of meditation?