Ideally, we have sufficiently exercised during the day,
not had too much caffeine or eaten too close to bedtime,
and not have subjected ourselves to violent or overly stimulating movies, news broadcasts, or video games after 6:00 pm…
When it is bedtime we want to think of things that calm us.
It helps to take a hot bath, then slip on something very comfortable.
I love my sleepwear! I have satiny pjs and night gowns, flannel pjs for the cooler nights, and my beloved plush green fleece bathrobe…
When the lights go out, I have several things that I like to think of (depending on my mood).
In no particular order, I like to focus on:
1. The color blue. It is my favorite color and it is very soothing…blue ocean waves, blue flowers, blue sky….
2. My husband John and how much I love him
3. God. When I focus on God I feel safe, loved, and very secure.
4. Focus on my breath and the comfort of my bed, blankets, pillow, and sweet husband next to me.
5. A favorite memory
7. The colors of the rainbow
8. A favorite view from nature (from on top of a a mountain, ocean, in the forest..)
9. This sounds silly but sometimes I drift off to sleep very quickly if I think of something technical such as how to change something on a website.
10. My many blessings
11. A trip or vacation that I am looking forward to.
I like to drift off to sleep with a smile on my face and in my heart knowing that I am loved, safe, and have a great life!
Moonlight is sculpture. ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne
Last night was Hollywood’s night for the stars. Tonight is the night for the moon.
This beautiful evening I offer you a meditation for this full moon night.
In a quiet space, get comfortable. If you can do this meditation outside or in the house with a view of the moon, I highly recommend it.
If you have a good view of the moon, have all other lights out. Bask in the moonlight.
A meditation and moonlight bath begins with you:
Breathing fully in and out.
Again, breathe fully in and then out slowly.
Let the air fill your belly.
Gently let it out.
Sit upright and imagine the top of your head reaching the moon high up in the sky.
You are going to (for a spell), tune into that powerful energy that our full moon has on this beautiful night.
After breathing in and out fully at least five times, sit and be silent.
Just sit. And breathe. Sit as upright as you can.
The gentle warm light of the moon is reaching you and you are are connecting with it.
In your mind, dance with the moonlight a bit.
Think of all the love that went into making you, and
all the love that you emit everyday.
You are pure love.
The moon’s light is softly touching every part of you.
The healing energy knows where you are tired, and where you are hurt.
If there is a particular part of your body that aches, focus in your mind the moon light to that place.
If your are sad or angry, invite the light to come into your heart.
Soft warm glowing love is now healing every part of you that needs healing.
If you wish, you may now open your eyes and click on this link for some beautiful full moon mediation music as you continue to breathe and bask in the gentle loving light of the moon…
Or you may choose to remain silent.
As you bask in this moonlight bath,
consider the tremendous blessing that you are to the world.
The moon recognizes it, and it is shining it’s light on YOU.
You are whole,
as whole as the moon is full tonight…
Have a blessed night!
In my childhood home, Hawaii, we would use the term “talk story” to mean anytime we chatted with one another, shared something with each other, or made small talk with strangers.
What stories are we telling people? What are we sharing about ourselves and our lives?
I have caught myself lately while talking with my husband, daughter, and close friends… some of my “stories” are not really want I want to affirm for myself. In this past year, for example, I’ve started to talk about my 46 year old body in terms of “getting softer”. When my 15 year old daughter wants or needs something, I am in the habit of telling her how I can’t afford these things because I am on a teacher’s salary…
Are these the kinds of stories I want to put out for myself and my life? I think not! I greatly prefer talking about how strong my body is getting from regular workouts at our gorgeous new gym and how I am working towards providing a life that can afford many wonderful things for my daughter, my husband, myself, and our community…
What stories are you in the habit of telling? Some of these tales may be very old , with their beginnings sowed back in early childhood. Are they still what you want to identify with and affirm for your present life? If not, The good news is that we can change our stories anytime we want.
This day, New Years Day, I invite you to consider the story of your life. How do you want to think of yourself, your work, your marriage, your aspirations? If you have some good old stories rattling around that are still serving you well, then that is great. You also may choose to edit and tweak some stories, or perhaps write a new draft all together….
Today during my journal writing time I am going to write down my story for 2013 and beyond. In so many ways, this is a fresh new start.
Each time we focus, we create a new beginning.
I just can’t wait in the coming days, weeks, and months of this new year to get together with folks, and “talk story“!
To all the wonderful storytellers out there, the stories that need to be told, and the ones who care enough to listen…
Worrying is a major cause of losing sleep at night. One of the main reasons why this site is called The Warm Milk Journal is that I highly recommend writing in your journal when you are feeling worried and anxious.
2. Writing is taking action and you will feel like you are doing something rather than hopelessly worrying.
3. Writing allows you to get some perspective. Your troubles may not seem so bad once you get them on paper.
4. Once on paper, you can give yourself permission to release them.
5. Writing enables you to turn a negative thought and recreate it into something more positive and constructive.
6. You can write your worst case scenario down, visualize it happening, and then picture yourself getting on with your life. From that lowest of low points there will be no place to go but up!
7. You may write to God and ask for guidance.
8. You may get creative and write some poetry which can be quite soothing to a tired and anxious mind.
9. Ask questions in your journal. Asking the right questions may give you insights and ideas you may never have previously thought of. If you turn out your light shortly after writing the question(s) down, your sub-conscious mind will go to work on it as you sleep.
10. Write down affirmations that center you. I really like: “I Am safe”, “I Am loved”, or simply “Peace”.
11. A little drawing and doodling can be quite relaxing. I enjoy drawing organic and geometrical shapes and then shading or coloring them in.
Any of these eleven journal writing strategies will get you back to sleep soon!
When you are ready to go to sleep or if you have been woken up in the middle of the night, the last thing you want is for your mind to start thinking about the events of the day or worries, etc.
A simple technique that I use is color meditation. It is easy and quite effective. When you are wanting to go to sleep, think of a color that is soothing for you.
I always use blue because it is my favorite color and I find it to be very pleasing and soothing. Enjoy images of anything of that particular color that come into your mind. I think of all things blue. If I notice my mind wandering a bit, I will even think to myself, the word “blue”.
I am asleep in no time. Try it. It really works!
P.S. If you find the color blue soothing like I do, you may check out my Pinterest board, “A study in blue” for some blue inspiration
If you are lying there awake and can’t get to sleep, try this:
1. Lie there in your bed and relax: get comfortable, breathe, be still.
2. Clear your mind. Just be.
3. Now use your internal voice to silently describe anything that you are aware of.
4. Keep your “voice” in your head as monotone and calm as possible.
5. Then begin describing things that come to mind. This is a bit of a free association exercise. It is okay if the things you think of are completely random or even bizarre. Don’t judge. Just do.
For example, if I were doing this exercise it would be somewhat like this (now granted I am not lying in my bed right now in my dark bedroom. I am sitting outside in my back patio, but the technique is the same…)
Breathe…deep Buddha belly breathing…
I close my eyes for a moment and just listen. I smell. I feel. I am still.
Now, I am currently aware of:
1. the sound of crickets.
2. the gentle breeze blowing on my skin.
3. the quality of the light on the neighbor’s palm tree as the sun continues to go down.
4. the neighbor’s cat sitting looking at me from a distance
5. I’m not hungry for dinner yet although I know my husband is ready to eat..
6. that breeze has now stopped
7. I hear a child playing in our community swimming pool.
8. the hum of a nearby air conditioning unit just came on.
9. A jogger just went by on our street saying hello to the child in the pool
10. I hear some cars in the distance..
You get the idea. This is not only very relaxing but it really puts you in the NOW. It is quite an amazing exercise. I will do this again later when I am in bed.
Try this anytime you just want to meditate or want to fall asleep fast.
Source: I Can Make you Sleep by Paul McKenna
Are you dreamy? Do you drift? Do you ever want something more or different for your life?
How can we live the life of our dreams if we are not sure what we want?
To get clear on what you want I offer you this morning these five ideas:
1. In your journal or on a piece of paper, write down 100 things that you want to be, 100 things that you want to have, and 100 things that you want to do.
2. Imagine that you only had a few months left to life. What would be most important to you then?
3. Read about and talk to people who are doing what you want.
4. Express your desires to the people closest to you. Ask for their support (there is also the element of accountability when you share your dreams and goals with others).
5. Keep trying new things and be persistent. It is easy to give up quickly. If you believe in something, stick with it.
If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.
Have a blessed day,
What made you feel safe and loved as a young child at bedtime?
Was it your soft fuzzy “blankie”?
Perhaps your mom or dad reading you a bedtime story, saying your prayers with you, and tucking you in?
As you get ready to go to bed tonight, I invite you to think back to a time when you felt safe and loved. If you were afraid, loving arms were there to hold you. When you were cold, blankets and a teddy bear or raggedy ann doll were there to cuddle.
You are still that child deep inside. You are still safe and loved.
Take no prisoner attitude-
You are enough. Believe it. Own it.
I truly believe that believing in ourselves and loving ourselves is the best cure and medicine for anxiety.
Tonight, I invite you during your meditation and journal writing time to focus on your strengths and your power.
Close your eyes and get silent. Breathe. It is a full moon time so harness that energy. Think of the moon light shining on you. Breathe.
Be in that special space for as long as you wish. Don’t think. Empty your cup and bask in that wondrous moonlight.
When you are ready to, open your eyes.
Here are a few journal prompts for your journal writing…
1. What are your strengths?
2. What makes you feel strong?
3. When people compliment you what do they compliment you about?
4. What thoughts put spring in your step?
5. Are there any times when you feel like you are giving your power away? (to circumstance or other people for instance)?
A blessed evening to you,
Five years ago, I was really working on getting a handle on my anxiety. I learned about meditation which helped me tremendously. Meditation is a wonderful tool to train, focus, and calm your mind.
There are many meditation techniques out there. This morning I would like to share with you one that is very simple to do and has worked very well for me.
I discovered indigo when I began to meditate on the colors of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet….
I always sensed a greater concentration when I focused on indigo. Perhaps it is because blue has always been my favorite color and indigo is a very rich shade of blue. Some say indigo is a very spiritual and powerful color. At the end of this post I will share some links to sites about indigo if you would like to learn more about it.
My meditation technique is this: Letting Go With Indigo
I will close my eyes and simply visualize the inner deep indigo layer of a fire flame. That is it.
If I am taking a bath I will burn a candle and focus on the flame. In our living room we enjoy lighting candles or using our fireplace too.
Even if you are not near an actual burning flame, this technique works very well.
Recently when I had an uncomfortable medical procedure done, I had the nurse hold my hand and I closed my eyes , breathed, and concentrated on the indigo in a candle flame the entire time. I was surprised when my doctor told me it was over. The dreaded procedure went by much quicker and painless than I had imagined.
The power of indigo! Try this meditation when:
1. You are feeling afraid
2. You are feeling anxious
3. Your mind is overly active
4. You feel disconnected
5. You wish to develop your intuition or need an answer to a question
6. Anytime you want to be calm, focused, and in touch with the divine and your own power.
I find you can reap the benefits by doing this for only a minute or two. It is truly amazing.
Some resources if you want to learn more about indigo: