My mind is always busy

Do you find that when you try to be still and quiet and hope to relax that your mind gets busy and won’t be quiet? It can be very frustrating. People often tell me that “it is hard for me to be quiet and ‘switch off’ when my mind is always busy”. If you are trying to develop the practice of meditation this can prove to be a deterrent, if you let it. What people don’t always realise until they try to relax is that they do in fact have a busy mind, like they are always thinking, always on … Read more

Do you keep Sunday special?

A news report today is suggesting that the UK government is considering the temporary suspension of the Sunday trading laws.  These laws limit the hours shops can be open that day, and they are proposing suspending them because it is thought advantageous to have the big shops open over the period of the summer Olympic and Para-Olympic games this year. Immediately the “Keep Sunday Special” lobby has sprung into action in defence of limited opening hours and there are accusations of more anti-Christian behaviour in government. For those outside the UK who might be bemused by all this, once upon … Read more

Try just being and not doing for a while

In an activity-orientated society such as ours, the thought of not doing very much might seem a bit strange. Which begs some interesting questions. This came up recently in a conversation I was having. “What do you like doing?” I asked, to get the reply, “Not very much. I just like being.” Now I guess a lot of people would find the prospect of that a bit uncomfortable for them. We’re all very busy, so much so that it’s a pretty regular question to ask, “How are you? Keeping busy?” So, to say “No”, would put presumably put you in … Read more

Do Mondays really get to you?

I don’t know if you find it difficult to re-focus at the start of each week, but people often talk about the Monday morning syndrome, the challenge of re-adjusting to the weekday routine after the relaxation and distractions of the weekend. So Monday is often a day when things seem to get off to a bad start, particularly if you aren’t really getting the best out of your job, or a problem crops up and it really hits you when you come back off your weekend, or things seem to go wrong on Mondays, or you are not in the … Read more

It’s hard to stay connected with all that’s going on

Do you feel you live in a nano-second world? Lots to think about, lots going on, feeling pressured, too much to do, no time? As one who is used to encouraging people to slow down and really get into the deeper meaning of something, this can sometimes be a challenge! I was having what I thought was an interesting conversation with somebody, in which I thought they were engaged, and I was making what to me was an important point – and I was really getting into it – when I became aware that they were no longer “there”. Their … Read more

To sleep or not to sleep

One of the most draining effects of pressure, worry and anxiety for many at present is sleeplessness. Those who sleep well at night may have no idea what it can be like for another to lie awake for hours at a time, unable to drift off and then crawl through the day drained of energy and with poor concentration. The effects don’t stop there. Believe it or not but there’s a good chance that they’ll get it again the next night, and then the next. And they feel the cold more and find it difficult to engage with people. And … Read more

Consciously managing the mind

Anyone who has spent time being quiet, such as in meditation, will probably say that sometimes their minds will be very active, with lots of thoughts going round in their heads. It can seem as if the outer noise that they might want a break from will continue on the inside. For example, if you are having a busy day, you might pause for some quiet time, go within, and find as you try to settle for meditation (or silent prayer), that whatever is preoccupying your thoughts will continue in the meditation. Whatever you do, focusing on the breath or … Read more

Having trouble getting time out

How much do you get caught up in the culture of busyness? Always doing something, not enough hours in the day, too much to do, must hurry, can’t stay long talking, I’m late, can’t afford it, need to get more time-smart, etc. And if it’s not you, it’s around you. However, we collude with it one way or another, even by accepting that that’s how it has to be. So, if this is true for you, then this weekend just say “stop!” Pause, take in some deep breaths and relax a moment. Stop the mental activity. Come into the Now. … Read more