Are You Celebrating your Mistakes?
One of my first jobs back in the seventies was to create a community program to hospitalize mental health clients locally rather than sending them to the state hospital, which was the common practice at the time. When the Clinical Director hired me she said, “You’re creating something new and untried; you’ll be taking risks we’ve never taken before in this community. I want you to be reassured if I hear complaints, I’ll know it means you’re doing a good job of shaking things up to create something new and different!” Her insight supported me and my team to shorten the length of successful hospitalizations? from 3 weeks to 3 days and allowed clients to remain closely connected with their family and friends. Thirty years later, this program is taken for granted as “of course, this is how we do it.”
She was right, taking risks to stretch into something new means increasing the odds of making mistakes along the way! ‘Tis the way of the Game of Life.
Good News!!! Our biology rewards our stretches regardless of outcome with a big serotonin boost. In other words, every time we do something we’ve never done before or we do a common thing in a novel way, whether we succeed or not, we get a release of feel-good hormones. Thus, our natural biological system is designed to inspire us to stretch again and again and again–no matter what.
This month’s meditation is dedicated to Celebrating Our Mistakes!
And I’m thrilled to offer you for the first time the audio recording of this meditation! You can click below where it says, “April 2013 Meditation” to listen. And I would be so happy to have you write your comments on the accompanying blog pages, so everyone can benefit from your experience…
… Focusing on your breath, you easily notice the length of your incoming breath in comparison to your out-going breath– which is longer and which is shorter …
… Now breathing to equalize you can… Inhale to the count of 1-2-3-4 and exhale to the count of 4-3-2-1…?Inhale to the count of 1-2-3-4 and exhale to the count of 4-3-2-1…
… Now inhale 1-2-3-4… Hold your breath 4-3-2-1… Exhale 1-2-3-4… Hold the emptiness 4-3-2-1… and as your breathing finds a natural balance… your attention easily come to rest in the belly, just behind your navel, where you sense the inside of your body… as you scan your body, you’ll become aware of how your body feels when you make mistakes … (take a moment to notice)…
… Wherever you sense the energy of making mistakes, give your attention over to it… you’ll notice the size of this energy… How much of your body is it taking up? Does it extend through your spine or just under the skin?Does it have a smooth or rough surface? Wet or dry? Cool or warm?
… As this energy takes form, your imagination gives it a color… as you notice the color, you’ll also sense whether it’s amorphous or a a specific shape or object… (Take time to sense it specific form)
… As you have an awareness of the specific form… go ahead and move your attention into the center of it… imagining yourself inside this energy, you’ll get a clear sense of the thoughts, feelings, and images here… Welcome them as best as you can…?(Pause and sense your unique experience)…
… As you embrace this energy… go ahead and speak to yourself either out loud or in your mind…
“What I’m most upset with you about making mistakes is… because I feel… As I consider forgiving you…”
Whatever else wants to be said… go ahead and speak it to yourself now “… ”
… As you feel an energy of forgiveness breaking through the cracks… a sense of warm excitement bubbles up and celebrates your willingness to stretch into new ventures… new challenges… unknown outcomes … Welcoming this warm feeling of living fully as best as you can… take a moment to rest in the glory and goodness of it… (Yes, Pause to Receive)
… Realizing mistakes are part of the journey of stretching and risking and growing… You appreciate yourself and welcome your potential that is always naturally expanding… it feels so good to know life is consistently an adventure even when we find ourselves on the wrong path!
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May this month be a delightful adventure of stretching into your natural greatness and celebrating your mistakes.
Blessings and Love,
The RIM® Institute