Movement can be an important part of being ready to meditate or do any type of focused activity. Here are a couple of ways I use movement to support my creative and contemplative work.
Sometimes it helps to grease the wheels a bit and do some movement to make it easier for your body to settle in and relax so you can focus without getting restless.
:: Do some stretches or yoga for a few minutes
:: Dance to some music that calms you or opens up your heart to inspiration and flow–I’ve shared a video below of a current favorite.
I love polyrhythmic music (one of my kids once asked me if I had any music where people were singing in English). I find some dancing before meditating can help me ground, release tension, and get ready for some spiritual adventures all at the same time.
During your work
Movement during your meditations or creative work can really support the experience–it helps you move beyond the monkey mind chatter and get inspired.
I frequently find that I can get great ideas when walking, or running (if that’s your thing, not mine). I use this in particular if there’s something I’m tense about, so I use the nervous tension to propel the movement and then just wait for inspiration. Quietly, like my mind is on the shore of a calm lake and I’m listening to the waves.
I carry a notebook with me or leave voice notes on my phone so I don’t forget what popped into my mind.
Swimming in the ocean, riding a bike, canoeing or kayaking, working in the garden–these work too.
As part of the work
This can be fun. You might feel the urge to move, even if you’ve been sitting quietly and trying to get answers. Pay attention to your body–it might want to move or dance.
Here’s an example–sometimes when I’m working on my novel I get the urge to do some belly dancing – for me it revs up my creative flow. I’m terrible at this but it still works – some things work best in the privacy of our own homes.
Your body is the last energetic system to assimilate the energies of your intuition or inspiration.
See if you feel like moving after a period of focused creativity–walking, gardening, working out (weights are good for this)–get in touch with what your body wants and you might find inspiration pops in when you’re doing this.
I like some quick stretches and playing with my dog.
:: What movement works for you?
:: How might you incorporate movement into getting inspired?
:: What has your body been prompting you to do regarding relaxing into a mind/body state that allows you to create with ease and joy?
What I’m listening to right now
Here’s a current favorite: I dance to this to settle my energy before meditating.
The people in the group are Tuaregs from the Sahara desert in northern Mali and Niger; this song is about their love of the desert (Tinariwen, the name of the group, is the plural of Tenere–which means desert in their language).
When I was in Peace Corps, there would be times when the Tuaregs came down from the desert with their cattle and dates for the market. Many of them have startling blue eyes – I learned a few words of their language and I’d say hello when they were close just to see their eyes.
This music opens up my heart and I can feel the breeze and heat and freedom of the desert in the sound. What music and movement open you up?