I read Dan Harris‘ book 10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works when it came out a couple years and although I rated it 4 stars on Goodreads, never wrote a review. His follow-up, Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics: A 10% Happier How-to Book warrants sharing my thoughts.
I have always thought I would like to be one of those folks who can meditate but it just never clicked. My ADHD mind just couldn’t be still long enough to feel like it was doing anything. That was until I read this book. It turns out I am somewhat of an expert on meditation. I just didn’t realize that I have been doing it all my life.
When I take my first drink of Dr Pepper in a few days and pause to feel the coolness flow into my body and the flow of sugar rush climb up the back of my head until it encompasses my whole brain, I wasn’t just being a drama queen. I was stopping to experience that drink.
When I am confronted with someone spouting ridiculous profanities or insults and I take a deep breath and remind myself that it just isn’t worth it to enter into a shouting match with an idiot, I wasn’t just taking a time out. I was experiencing the moment and making a conscious decision to act and not react.
When I see something interesting on the side of the road and I stop, pull over and shoot a phots for my “Where in Texas is Chris?” series, I am not just being odd. I am stopping the frenetic pace of my travels and experiencing those amazing things that we normally fly right past.
This IS meditation. This IS being in the moment. This IS what all the patchouli-scented, Zen master wannabes are talking about! It is not about sitting cross-legged on the floor and chanting, “OHHHMMM.” It is not about bowing and saying, “Namaste” for no apparent reason. It is not about anything other than living in the moment and bringing yourself to that state when your mind races to the future or the present. Heck, it’s how I live.
I have to thank Dan Harris for helping me realize and put a name to what is happening in my mind. I highly recommend this book and Harris’ insistence that doing meditation for even a single minute is worth doing. I agree.
by Chris Doelle