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Guided Meditation for Stillness, Stability and Balance

October 9, 2009

In the swirl of activity and the intense demands of life, it’s easy to lose ones center. It can be challenging to maintain a sense of stability and balance. Our latest podcast meditation is designed to help you experience stillness in the midst of busyness, and then to create a stable reference point within that stillness.

The meditation helps focus and steady the mind. I’ve had requests for a morning meditation and as well as a meditation especially for students. This meditation may be good for both purposes.

Tips for this Meditation

  1. This meditation is best done sitting up in order to maintain alertness. It’s not a meditation for falling asleep.
  2. Occasionally my guided meditations suggest some use of visualization. In this meditation, you are guided to locate stillness and then a stable balance point within it. That point then becomes the focus of the meditation. It’s important not to strain to create this point or to work at concentrating on it. Just be very easy about the whole process. If what I suggest comes easily, fine. If not, let it go. It may take several repetitions of this meditation to get the hang of it.

I’d love to hear what you experience with this meditation. All comments and questions are welcome!

Comments

23 Responses to “Guided Meditation for Stillness, Stability and Balance”

  1. Anna on October 9th, 2009 3:15 pm

    Thank you for your wonderful podcasts :)

  2. Jane on October 10th, 2009 4:08 am

    I must be blind. I don’t see a link to listen to the podcast anywhere in this post. Where is it?

    Thanks!

  3. Mary on October 10th, 2009 8:49 am

    Anna, you are welcome!

    Jane, you are not blind — I’m just forgetful! I’ve added links in the post, and you can always listen to our podcast meditations on our Listen to Our Podcast page.

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  5. Jane on October 11th, 2009 8:43 am

    Thanks! :)

  6. Nicola Helmink on October 14th, 2009 2:03 am

    Hi,
    I just wanted to share my expeirence. I downloaded your podcasts many months ago onto my ipod, however it wasnt until my sleeping situation or lack thereof became so bad I was desperate for some help, that i thought of using them. I had done little meditation in the past but decided to give it ago and listened to your deep rest meditation. In the middle of the day after listening I was out for 4 hours, I was still aware of my surroundings but in a lovely dream like space. When I got up I was so recharged and full of energy felt like I’d slept for a month. It gave me hope that meditation was something helpful for me too. Although I have not had the same experience with the deep rest as I did the first time I am listening to various meditations when the need arises and with a combination of other aspects of my life coming together I have found myself more centered and have been sleeping naturally for the last couple of weeks. Thankyou very much for your help. I believe you mentioned on one of your podcasts that you have some meditations specifically for sleep? I would appreciate any info about this.
    Nicola

  7. Mary on October 15th, 2009 9:18 am

    Nicola – you are very welcome. It’s great to hear how much meditation is helping you!

    We have a CD (also available as an mp3 download) called Sleep Easy that was designed especially for sleep. You can purchase on this website or on iTunes.

  8. Tom Krause on October 21st, 2009 12:05 pm

    Just wanted to tell you my experience with your podcasts . . .

    I came across your podcast when I was looking for a guided meditation as directed by my AA sponsor. Meditation has been helpful to ground myself and clear myself of unwanted negative thought patterns. It has been a large part of my spiritual awakening.

    Also, I decided to quit smoking, an incredibly emotional and difficult addiction to release, one I had wrestled with many times.

    Your podcasts have helped tremendously. First off, there are SO MANY! Which is nice to provide an awesome variety. Sometimes I’ll do a long one, or sometimes I’ll “stack” a few shorter ones together and create a meditation experience. If I’m feeling angry, for example, I might do a Deep Relaxation with Gratitude.

    I find myself habitually realizing when a nicotine craving is causing my head to spin, so I take a “time out” and meditate. When I am done, I have effectively calmed my mind and re-energized. I have now stopped smoking (with aid of the guided meditations, the nicotine patch, and my own willingness) for 6 weeks!

    Thanks so much for this wonderful gift!

    Tom Krause

  9. Mary on October 21st, 2009 1:06 pm

    That’s wonderful, Tom, and you are welcome. I love how you combine them! Best wishes with your ongoing journey…

  10. patti on October 25th, 2009 3:14 am

    mary…thank you so much for the latest podcast.
    i have found it to be a wonderful meditation and i’ll be using it a lot over the next couple of months as we hurtle through our busiest time of the year.
    a still, quiet, balanced centre is precisely what i’ll be needing more than anything.

    i didn’t meditate for a month or so….and soon developed a tiny annoying invisible near-constant twitch in my lower eyelid.
    it’s the tip of the iceberg! this time i listened and acted. (this is to prove that i’m not just getting older…i’m getting wiser too).
    two sessions….tic has gone.

    while i am here, could i please put in a request for you to consider podcasting a walking meditation?
    my favourite local walk is 45 minutes long. i’ve thought about doing two of your other meditations back to back….but they relax me so much that i usually meditate last thing at night and go right to sleep afterwards.
    i think if i did the “let it be” meditation, they’d find me fast asleep on the track in the middle of the jungle, the next day, hehe.

    i hope you are keeping well and not overly busy.

  11. Mary on October 25th, 2009 12:56 pm

    Glad you liked this one, patti. Our bodies do let us know when we stop meditating!

    I am working on a walking meditation. We will probably offer it for sale or for a donation, to help support the podcast.

    Thank you for your good wishes — all the best to you, patti!

  12. patti on October 27th, 2009 2:32 am

    i will gladly pay for a walking meditation podcast. i’ll keep an eye out for it!

    i recently bought the silence of being mp3 set and they are just marvellous! i went through the whole lot as a set and managed to get myself to a very still profoundly quiet place.

    i’ve been turning tom’s “meditation stacks” idea over in my mind and i really like it!
    tom…any suggestions for more combos?

  13. Brechtje on January 13th, 2010 4:27 am

    Thank you so much for your wonderful podcasts! I’m still having some trouble meditating on a regular basis, and the podcast helps me focus.
    For the past few days, I’ve been feeling very anxious. Just now, in a break from work, I did this meditation and I feel a million times better! So much more energised and truly balanced, I feel much better about the things I still need to do as well. This is such an eye-opener for me!

  14. Mary on January 13th, 2010 12:39 pm

    This is great to hear, Brechtje. It’s amazing, isn’t it, what a difference a meditation break can make. Every work place should have a meditation break room!

  15. Wavelength on January 14th, 2010 1:02 am

    Mary,

    Thanks for your podcasts. I used them last night and this morning for the first meditation of my life.

    I began suffering from panic and anxiety about a year ago, returning home from abroad to visit my mother with Alzheimer’s. I have steadily used medication and exercise, therapy and anything that works but basically I am far from cured. One of the features of my condition, that doctors are at a loss to explain, is that I experience an intense internal trembling when I lie down to sleep at night that feels like an electrical current running through my body, a kind of “buzz”. It makes me so anxious and feels like the sky is about to fall on me. Inevitably, I don’t sleep, sometimes for two or three days in a row, which leaves me totally nuts. I even have difficulty with breathing, although I swim as much as I can. Doctors gave me a clean bill of health but say I am suffering from symptoms of panic disorder. Usually on waking, my body trembling is intense and lessens once I have fully woken up and move about.

    This morning I greeted it with you in my ears and the Stillness podcast taking me on a journey. Letting go and detaching but also being aware I tried to not be annoyed or panicked by the sensation of trembling as it jumped around my body, in my chest, in my hands, in my shoulders and always at the core of me somewhere in my lungs and stomach listening to your voice guiding me. I visualized something natural and saw a tree but needed something inert and saw a beautiful deep grey stone that was almost the blue, of very early morning light and I became as still as that stone. My body for a brief moment disengaged with the buzzing and I felt a palpable ripple of sensation flood over first my feet then my legs then slowly the rest of me. But I was absolutely still. Tears leaked onto the pillow on my bed. I have always thought meditation took effort and I am going to do it again tonight before sleep.

    I would sell my house for a night of ordinary sleep and this maybe the reason, thanks to your generosity of putting podcasts on the net for free, why I won’t have to.

    O

  16. Mary on January 14th, 2010 11:43 am

    Wavelength, you are certainly going through an ordeal. I know how horrible it is to not be able to sleep. It’s encouraging that you found this stillness in the meditation. It shows that things can shift. Please keep us posted on how things go with ongoing meditation.

  17. Brian Marum on July 16th, 2010 3:55 am

    Lovely meditation!

  18. Paula on March 15th, 2011 11:37 pm

    This is my favorite – I think the idea of swapping foreground for background is brilliant. I’ve tried a number of other methods for “centering” and none have been really helpful until I found this podcast. Really helps with my job as a flutist!
    Thanks!

  19. Mary on March 16th, 2011 9:56 am

    You’re welcome, Paula. So glad this meditation “clicked” for you! Where can we hear you playing the flute?

  20. Paula on March 16th, 2011 9:21 pm

    I play with the Tucson Symphony, the Arizona Opera, and the Utah Festival Opera, plus a few additional occasional odds and ends.

    Another thought/question on this meditation:
    A well known performance anxiety help book talks about focusing on a center point just below the navel. Although the author doesn’t say so in so many words, I think he’s speaking of the Chinese low Dantain which roughly corresponds with the manipura chakra. Perhaps the center point you suggest in the meditation refers to this as well?
    I’ve found it interesting that while I have always felt my upper chakras (heart, throat, third eye, crown) humming away, even before I knew what they were, I’ve never really been able to sense the lower ones. Hmmm… In the meantime, I “listen” to them, to see if one day they will speak to me.

  21. Mary on March 17th, 2011 8:54 am

    Paula, in this meditation, I’m not referring to a specific location such as the dantien, although that may be what people instinctively find. I like to leave things open-ended so people can discover for themselves what works. It’s true, for most people some chakras are more activated or accessible than others. Balance is having all of them open and functioning fairly evenly. The lower chakras do help with centering and grounding. Simply “listening” or paying attention to them can definitely help you to tune into them and strengthen them. You could also use the Chakra meditation in the podcast for this.

  22. sara on August 13th, 2011 4:12 pm

    This was lovely. Thank you so much for your site.

  23. Mary on August 14th, 2011 10:12 am

    You are very welcome, Sara.

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