How to Calm a Fanatical Mind

DSCN2731My brain rarely stops, I woke at 4.30am this morning, the rusted wheels of inspiration shifted from sleep to creative thought in a blink of one crusty eye. Ideas on my picture book, material for my blog, I could not get back to sleep. Sometimes I get a kick out of those ridiculously early morning writing sessions, it’s when I do my best work. Yet often, I need to not to think at all.

This week my boy asked a very valid question, a question only a child would ask.

“How do you think of nothing?”

“Meditation.”

“Whats meditation?”

It’s hard to explain, but for children I guess you could say, it’s about finding that peaceful place in your mind.”

“How do you do that? Asked my daughter.

“Well, I read a book once which recommended you imagine a peaceful place you have been to, for me, my quiet place was when I went to Queenstown in New Zealand. I was sitting on a wharf, by a lake, it was so still it mirrored the sky above. I imagine this place when I need to give my brain a recharge.”

“Mine would be the beach or sitting on the rocks at the beach.”

“Mine would be sitting with the dog.” I laughed knowing children have different ideas on meditation and the true meaning would come, with time.

Meditation in-depth, is something I never mastered, I suppose the closest I came, was when I practiced Tai Chi. The pure energy and lightness I felt through those gentle movements only worked when my mind stopped altogether, it is hard at first to break the constant manic thought patterns of an overactive brain. A quiet mind work out is a chance to regroup after a chaotic day.  I believe resting my inner thoughts and finding that peaceful place is paramount to writing well and feeling rejuvenated.

Yesterday I found a new place to meditate on. After a rainy day and kids climbing the walls with sheer boredom, we decided for Nan’s birthday to go to the Eurobodalla Botanic Gardens. We had been there many times before and enjoyed, the varied choice of bush tracks, a café which served fresh delicious produce and most importantly chocolate milkshakes for the kids.

What I did not expect to find was a feeling of full body relaxation that release of breath, a sigh of appreciation only a tired parent can give. My son ran ahead, over the rain-soaked, wooden bridge. The rushing water and strong smell of eucalyptus wasted on a hyperactive body that just needed a run. My daughter on the other hand noticed the wonderful things that nature had to offer. I watched her walk ahead with her grandmother, pointing and whispering, trying to alert me of a photo opportunity with a group of kangaroos. Tall spotted gums, reached for the sun, the dappled light played with her long hair as she scolded her brother for scaring the wildlife.

“What a beautiful peaceful place,” Said my mum as we sat listening to the persistent croaks from the creek and enjoyed the water birds ritual of harvesting bugs for breakfast.

“Truly invigorating.” I said.

“What are you doing?” Asked the boy.

“Soaking in the serenity.” I replied, he frowned as if to say what for? Before racing off down the children’s bush circuit track, with his sister in tow, telling him to slow down and wait for his Nan. I sat and waited, listening to their excited voices traveling through the canopy and realised it was my first opportunity to capture the beauty of stillness. I hope you enjoy my interpretation.

bush

When have you found that golden moment of serenity, where your mind is quiet and you can appreciate not thinking at all?lillies

reflection

kang

waterbird

kangaroo

About Minuscule Moments

Everybody has a DREAM. Today is the first day of the rest of my writing life. Its a lonely world out there when you are learning the craft. This year, as the same as last year, I want to finish my first children's picture book. I have learn't many wonderful lessons on this journey. You are never too old to learn.
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44 Responses to How to Calm a Fanatical Mind

  1. Shelley says:

    I’m enjoying the quiet of your photos, Kath. As for the times when I’m empty of thought, this happens fairly regularly: it can be when I’m busy with my plants or sitting in a lawn chair in the back yard listening to the birds. My inner peace comes from the Lord and surpasses the busyness of my world. He keeps me balanced.

  2. Time now 4:45 am. Your post a wonderful serene start to my day. I relax watching a sunset or sunrise while sitting on the bow of Mojito. Just looking at your pictures, calms my mind… in overdrive even before my alarm goes off at 5am. The kangaroo is so cute, the water pictures surreal. Thank your for a great post. I’ll try to soak in the serenity today…

  3. annepeterson says:

    I am in need of some quietness. My mind seems to get all wound up with much writing but I wholeheartedly agree, we need to get refreshed. Your descriptions were just wonderful, matched only by your pics. Thanks so much for sharing.

  4. G. Olivo says:

    I too have a very active mind and I use meditation for recharging my batteries. I’ve tried mindfulness and that seems to work for me. Although I do struggle to not think of nothing! Great post and very well written. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    • Thank you G, I think writing for children sends my brain into overload and I need an escape. But my mind is never shut down to new ideas, I am a big kid at heart. Thanks for stopping by.

  5. A lovely post and wonderful photos. I don’t presently have such a place and haven’t for longer than I can remember. I sorely feel its lack.

  6. What serene images! A beautiful post that makes me want to stop and smell the roses that much more.
    My quiet thoughtful moments seem to come easily first thing in the morning too, but I also love meditative walks, being in nature or just sitting on my deck enjoying the view of the ocean and sky. Even bath time is special to me as I like soaking for a while to relax and reflect.

  7. My mind and I are barely on speaking terms lately. I’ll give your pics as a peace offering.

    • Jacqui you started me thinking about relaxation the other day when you admitted it is not one of your strong points. So I may have written this just for you and people who find it hard to stop everything and listen to what your body needs. I hope you get back in touch with relaxation for your brilliant mind soon.

  8. Peace comes to me in quiet moments when I stop concentrating on my own thoughts — even my own prayers — and listen for the still, small Voice that I have learned to distinguish from my own inner voice. It always speaks love, and It always helps me go forward loving and serving others. Sometimes the goals I have set for myself shift in perspective, and dissolve into a new path I had not expected. I know this would not happen if I never quieted my own mind. The easiest time of day for me to do this is early morning, before the rest of the family wakes. As a sixty-year-old empty-nester, this is a little easier to do than when I was a young mother! But I love that first half-hour every morning, and keep a promise to myself and God that every day begins this way.

  9. p.s. Your writing and photos are inspirational, Kath. I especially love the water shots!

  10. lmccy says:

    Oh the racing mind.
    Loved the pictures!

  11. Hey Kath. My mind rarely stops either and I can relate to the middle of the night writing. God just seems to lay words on my mind in the stillness of the night. Loved the Kangaroo pictures. Thanks for sharing! Brenda

    • Brenda thanks for stopping by I appreciate you taking the time to read, Im an early riser now and my body clock is on target for 5am starts but I cheat because thats the time my husband is up for work.

  12. diannegray says:

    I absolutely love these pics, Kath 😀 My ‘moment’ is at sunset when all is quiet at the farm and the view is spectacular. It’s an ‘ah ha’ moment 😀

  13. Thanks Dianne nothing better than actually stopping and appreciating nature I say.

  14. “How do you think of nothing?” – perfect description of meditation! Beautiful post Kath! Apologies for having been away for awhile (traveling & graduation & in the upcoming weeks, school, have been keeping me away from the things I love to read!)

    I have to say I am terrible at mediation! I wish I could sit still & think of nothing as I think it’s a real sign of serenity & a peaceful heart but at this point, it takes so much to calm my flighty, anxious mind! I do recognise it’s something I need to work on though but it’s so hard to find the time & the peace in our busy world! Lovely that your kids, at their young age, are already thinking about meditation! (I do think living in the country helps though – as someone who lives in the city, I long for the peace of the country all the time!)

    • Sarah I was the same at your age, you have to remember to just let things go and flow, trust in the path you are on, now you have many favourite travel spots. Pick one that you felt most peaceful, that is your quiet meditation place in your mind. Good luck with it and keep posting wonderful stuff.

  15. My life thrives on yoga and meditation. Lovely post. 🙂

  16. Ahhhhh..that would be the place to be! Very beautiful. “Soaking in the serenity” indeed. Lovely and inspiring post my beautiful friend.

  17. Desi Clown says:

    I’ve often found a sudden sense of calm and a still frame of mind in a long train ride. Just looking outside at the changing landscape brings a sense of calm. and its quite some time before I realize I’ve had no thoughts… At home though, I’d never try and meditate, I’ve got Skrillex thumping through my head all day long :p haha! You have such amazing experiences to share, I love reading your posts 🙂

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