A2 Basic 12 Folder Collection
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- [Instructor] Welcome to this meditation
and I'll assume that if you are listening
that you have some type of major test or exam coming up
because that's what the title of this meditation is about.
Now the word meditation can conjure up different ideas
to different folks, but all it is is a way for us
to observe our thoughts and maybe quiet our thoughts down,
especially in a way that makes us feel
just a little bit lighter, a little bit more peaceful,
a little bit happier, and less stressed or anxious.
Oftentimes by doing that, it helps us do better
on the thing that we were stressed about in the first place.
Let's get started.
The first thing that I always emphasize,
this is true whenever I meditate,
is posture and breathing and environment can matter a lot.
Find someplace nice that you can sit down,
ideally a little bit quiet or at least where the sound
doesn't bother you, and sit upright as well as you can.
If there is a little bit of ambient sound,
don't let it bother you or irritate you.
Just accept that's the universe making its noises,
just something to observe.
It's almost a little bit funny.
As you accept your environment,
whether it's your external environment
or even sensations that you have from your body,
start to breathe a little bit deeper and a little bit slower
than you were before this meditation began.
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
You can set your own pace for breathing in
and breathing out, but just try to go a little bit deeper
and a little bit slower.
Now when I do this, I like to sit upright,
usually on a chair, and keep my hands on my lap face up,
but you can do whatever feels comfortable for yourself.
The other thing that I'll ask you to do,
it might feel a little unnatural,
is force a smile.
Try to make it as real as possible,
but if you have to, force it.
What I find is, obviously when we're happy,
we tend to smile, but you can actually make the wiring
go the other way.
That by forcing a smile, it can actually make you
feel a little bit better, a little bit more positive.
Try to keep that smile on your face
throughout the meditation
and ideally well beyond the meditation.
It doesn't have to be a fake smile,
it could just be a very slight, gentle smirk, if you like.
But something that makes you feel a little bit better.
With that, continue to breathe in, breathe out.
If you haven't closed your eyes already,
you can gently close your eyes.
Before I give you a chance to just be with yourself quietly
and observe and maybe still your thoughts,
I'll give you some ideas to think about.
A lot of the stress of an exam
comes from identifying with the outcome.
We get caught up with, "What if I don't do well?"
Or "I need to do well."
Or "I am going to do so awesome that when I do awesome,
"all these amazing things are going to happen in my life."
The problem with getting attached to the outcome
is the outcome may or may not happen.
All those fears that you have may or may not happen.
All those hopes you have may or may not happen.
When you identify with those, and if they don't happen,
well that might create a little bit of a disconnect
between yourself and reality and that's one
of the number one reasons why people get unhappy.
Reality isn't working out the way they want it to.
Instead, you could identify a bit more with the process,
the adventure.
Saying, "Look, I have this thing coming up
"and I'm going to put my best foot forward.
"I am going to put in the work to prepare
"and I'm going to enjoy that work.
"I am the sentient being on this planet,
"in this mystery that we call life
"and I get to engage on this challenge called this test.
"Let me enjoy these moments."
Before you know it, you're going to be a lot older
and you're going to reminisce about this moment
in your life right now.
You're going to laugh at yourself,
"Why didn't I enjoy it more?"
Now with that notion of focusing on the adventure
of preparation, I'll give you another visualization
that I find really useful.
Imagine that your subconscious is a massive ocean
and your consciousness, the part that thinks to itself,
"Here I am!
"I'm some type of pure awareness trying to observe
"and make sense of the universe."
That's a sky that's clear and full of sunlight.
Most of us are operating on the surface of that ocean
most of the time.
There are all these random thoughts
that are just bubbling up from that ocean,
waves that are crashing into our consciousness.
For many of you, it might be thoughts, ruminations
about how you're doing on that test
or thinking about consequences of doing well or not well.
It could be other things.
It could be things going on in your social life,
assignments that you have due,
things in the broader world that are troubling you.
But one of the ideas behind meditation is to realize
that those thoughts that are surfacing
from your subconscious, they aren't you
and you can actually rise above those thoughts,
rise above the surface of that ocean.
Imagine yourself as just a pure awareness rising above
that surface and you're realizing all of those thoughts
that were thrashing around,
that were splashing against your pure awareness,
your consciousness, they don't have to.
Now you're above them and there's just a few drops
that every now and then you can giggle and wipe off a bit.
You can look down on the surface of that ocean
and from a distance, those thoughts really don't seem
like that big of a deal.
As you look down on those thoughts, you begin to appreciate
that they're starting to slow down.
The ocean is starting to become a little more still.
As you continue to breathe in and breathe out,
there you are, just in that sun-drenched sky
above the ocean.
You are that sun-drenched sky above that ocean
that is your subconsciousness.
You are that pure sunlight.
With that idea in mind, I'll give you a minute of silence
where you can just breathe in, breathe out
and experience joy in that sunlight that you are in.
Experience joy in not getting caught up in those thoughts.
If your brain wanders off, if your consciousness goes back
to the surface of that ocean and that starts
to get a little bit choppier, no reason to worry about that.
Just remind yourself, giggle a little bit,
and say, "Oh! I got lost in the ocean again
"on the surface with those waves.
"Let me just rise up again."
I'll be back in about a minute.
All right so we are back.
Continue to breathe in, breathe out.
Hopefully you experienced just a little bit of stillness,
even if it was for five or 10 seconds,
the experience of knowing that you aren't your thoughts,
knowing that you can observe your thoughts,
knowing that there can be moments in your life
where you are free of your thoughts.
Now as we are winding down this meditation,
keep a couple of big ideas in your head.
Remind yourself not to focus on the outcome,
but to focus on the process and to enjoy it.
That smile that hopefully you still have on your face,
have that smile the whole time that you're preparing.
Have that smile as you go into whatever type of test
or exam you are about to take on.
If you can, try to take a little bit of time out every day,
even if you can do it for a minute, two minutes,
three minutes, where you can sit silently with good posture,
breathe slowly, deeply, put a smile on your face,
and rise above your thoughts.
I feel confident that not only are you going
to enjoy this experience,
but you're going to put your best foot forward on that test
and you're also going to realize over time
that this test isn't that big of a deal.
Many things in our life
that in the moment seem like a big deal,
with a little bit of distance of time and space,
aren't that big of a deal.
If you haven't already, I encourage you
at your own time and pace, while you're continuing
to smile and continuing to breathe in
and breathe out deeply, gently open up your eyes
and take joy in this adventure,
this mystery that we call life.
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Guided meditation to help with test anxiety

12 Folder Collection
林宜悉 published on March 28, 2020
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