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Monica Soto

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Concentration


Guest lunar_butterfly
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Hi everyone.. Just thinking out loud here really...

Does anyone else find it really hard to concentrate one whatever area you are studying/rituals etc when you have young children?

I know theres no time limit on developing knowledge and practicing etc, but I am new to the concept of what I do now i.e. Researching all things pagan (i am still quite lost), reading, learning meditation and special interest in tarot and crystals.. But I work 30 hrs a week in quite a mentally draining job (however, equally rewarding) and have a 2 yr old girl too.. So once I have sorted everything out in the day, I feel the only "spare" time I have I am either shattered or gave to use my time for other things, as definatley cant concentrate during the day, or am i just whinging now lol..

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The concept of "me-time" is such a glib one in today's world - not often possible when interacting with family, friends and anyone with whom you live! I read in the bath ! Books but not Kindle (if a book goes in the water, you can dry it out, if the Kindle goes in then it's a very expensive pfft !!)

 

Finding time and sometimes, the inclination when you do have time, to meditate - when you need peace and quiet to concentrate - is hard even if calls on your time are few! I meditate best when gardening or walking, preferably in woodland or beside the sea - but I have to make the effort to do that and it is not a daily regime.

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Ever thought about getting your self some mala beads ? You can get ones that go on your wrist so when you got few min to spare just use them, a lot of Buddhist and Hindus use them. You will find you can use them any where. Sitting , standing, watching tv etc.

 

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I think that perhaps you can find something meditative that you can do whilst doing other things or perhaps in a moment at work. In a Barefoot Doctor book I have (not everyone's cup of tea I know) he talks about using a simple breathing meditation and focussing exercise whilst doing other things. (This involved breathing and imagining the breaths creating a loop inside your torso and head, the in breath going from your base chakra to the top of your head and the out breath going down to connect up again at your naval. Then imagining that you are viewing the outside world from a cave back in your skull between your ears. Simple but works pretty well. I use it now with a bit of grounding thrown in.

 

But it is straightforward enough that you can do it whilst ironing or digging in the garden or whatever it might be. (I used to use it at work to calm me down when dealing with difficult customers!

 

Barefoot would say that rather than setting time aside to be spiritual to look for ways to make your everyday tasks spiritual..ie. don't sit and try to feel like buddha for half an hour..try to find a spiritual way to spend all the time. In one of Dan Millman's books he talks about trying to do yoga while ignoring his daughter and people talking about finding time for spiritual work and how he then realised that spending time with his daughter was spiritual work, just of a different sort.

 

It might also be useful to listen to something spiritual (a podcast or audiobook or something) if you drive to work, whilst doing anything else you need to do.

 

It is important to find a little time that is yours whenever you can and sometimes to get other people to help you find that time.

 

but it's equally important not to feel guilty or bad if you do have time when you miss out on some of these things. We all do it (at least I know I do!)

 

Bit rambling but I hope it helps in some way.

 

Fingers crossed you find a way

 

x

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Don't stress. Fitting anything around a two year old and a job is difficult. I remember that feeling when you've got five minutes of spare time, but your brain feels too mushy to do anything except watch TV (without even really noticing what's on) or fall asleep. You know, I'm not sure that this concept of "me time" or "making space for myself" is always very helpful. Sometimes it can become a source of stress in itself "Aaargh got to have "me time" today! When do i fit it in". it's hard enough to get through the day fitting in everything that needs to be done sometimes. I switched from baths to showers when my two were small, because there weren't enough hours in the day to run a bath..... I've never been very good at thinking spiritual thoughts whilst doing the ironing etc. either. The only things that make ironing palatable I find are a large gin and tonic and my old LOST DVDs (any episode where Josh Holloway takes his shirt off and fortunately there are a lot of those). Seriously, when you have small children you need to spend free time doing things that make you feel good. If that's meditating or reading about ritual then great - but if it's collapsing in a chair and watching something mindless, then go for it.

 

My advice would be to stop trying so hard. There are no pagan brownie points awarded for studying or meditating so long in a day. Fit it in when you have time and when you feel like it and if a few days go past when you don't feel like it, well that's fine too. :)

 

One thing that did work for me was taking them for walks. I've always thought best when I'm walking and I used to stick the offspring in the pushchair, go out and let my mind wander. We lived in central London then, so I just used to wander around the streets and parks. Pushing a double pushchair up hills does wonders for your fitness too! Not so easy in the winter and with a two year old you might need to bribe ...er I mean persuade of course :o_wink2: - but worth thinking about, maybe.

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Freydis said a lot of what I wanted to say. With a 2 year old you might as well resign yourself to the fact that you are only going to get bits and pieces of time in which to chill or meditate. "Me time" is a concept which is great in theory, but is not very realistic when you have a small child...... I'm afraid it is mainly "Them time". Different times in our lives bring different opportunities. When My lad was small life was hectic. I had to work all hours and I never seemed to have enough time and only rarely got time to myself. Looking back I see that it was a time when I gathered a lot of knowledge and had many wonderful experiences. And now that I am older and more confident and my son is older, I can make much more time for quiet and reflection. I would suggest you go with the flow and do your best. Oh, and enjoy it, it won't last forever. Mike

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  • 1 month later...

We have similar lives it seems, i'm 42 and my little girl is 5.

When you've collapsed on the sofa and feel totally drained, take that time to become still. Don't do anything, don't think about what you want to read/practice/study, just relax, breath deeply and be still. Close your eyes, let the days chaos whirl around for however long it takes. Start counting, chanting (aloud or silently), what ever you need to do to help those thoughts relax.

Just be still and relax.

I believe a still mind is the first thing we need to achieve to appreciate all that there is to learn. Without it, life certainly feels different.

:)

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