Meditation has widely been shown to reduce stress, clear the mind, relax the body. Meditation obviously has many health benefits, both mental and physical. But who has time? And for us Type A’s with ADHD, sitting still is a challenge (though no doubt with many advantages).

But what is meditation? One definition is “the practice of calming and emptying the mind” often via techniques such as breath control and mental imagery.

At times I think of racquetball as “moving” meditation. Can I think of naught else but the next hit? Can nothing be in mind for the next 60 minutes that does not concern the game? Can my focus stay 100% within those 4 white walls? Can I control and direct my mind? Can I forget the day and the ‘morrow? Play in the moment? Relax totally into the present moment?

I pause momentarily and use mental imagery to see a perfect delivery before every serve. If I miss a shot, I re-visualize the shot as I had intended it and carry that positive image forward in my mind. I breathe as deeply as possible, down to the base of my lungs, which helps me maintain my stamina and endurance.

Having learned and honed the skill of directing my thoughts, focusing my mind, silencing the internal critic, I use that high leverage ability elsewhere.

The knowledge that I can control and direct my thoughts creates confidence and is an ability with application to many situations in life. Knowing that I am master of my thoughts means I can release all thoughts that hurt and that I have taken a major step to mastering my emotions. When I am being challenged by stress, I can choose to remember that stress is not an event but a reaction to an event and I can choose different thoughts, different reactions.

Your mind is yours, to make of it what you will. I sometimes think of parts of my mind like a child or a teenager, and other parts like the parent who must discipline and raise this embryonic potential to mature adulthood.

Closing quotes:

“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless – like water. Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, you put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.” — Bruce Lee, martial arts expert and actor; 1940-1973

“Meditation brings wisdom; lack of mediation leaves ignorance. Know well what leads you forward and what holds you back, and choose the path that leads to wisdom.” — Hindu Prince Gautama Siddharta, founder of Buddhism; 563-483 B.C.

“If I had not already been meditating, I would certainly have had to start. I’ve treated my own depression for many years with exercise and meditation, and I’ve found that to be a tremendous help.” — Judy Collins, Grammy Award winning folk singer, best known for “Both Sides Now.”