It is 9 pm on May 31. I have a contract with myself to write at least one blog post per month.
If I look back at previous posts and I can see a pattern repeating itself… I am prone to procrastination. Notice, I did not say I am a procrastinator. It’s just that when the words in my mind haven’t take on a cohesive shape, I wait… and wait… and wait… all on a subconscious level, of course. Then, if all goes well, the pieces come together and I can write seamlessly.
That did not happen this month! Too much – too many – ideas, events, sounds, thoughts and responsibilities. This month has so been so full. I am energized, but tired. I have been “out and about” far more than my constitution enjoys but, everything was so positive and fulfilling. I was able to keep going.
One of the highlights of the month was putting together a workshop on meditation. My creative process was the most important aspect of this project because I knew I did not want to design a “left-brained” academic-type event and, I didn’t want to fill the room with candles and incense and pillows on the floor. This, I knew, would not fit my “audience.” I needed to make seniors comfortable so they would remain open to the learning process without allowing their preconceptions get in the way. I wanted to introduce them to another way to handle stress of any kind – physical, mental or emotional.
I spent a week reading bits and pieces of magazine and newspaper articles I had saved over the years and put into a folder marked “Meditation.” Much of the information I saved from this source was information regarding the benefits and science of mediation. I read briefly from many books, the best of which and the one which was the most helpful, was “Real Happiness… The Power of Meditation” by Sharon Salzberg. I took in as much as I could without sorting it in my mind or putting the subjects in any order. I didn’t know when or how I would start to lay out the course, but I had faith in this process.
It was Sunday evening – the course was scheduled for Tuesday afternoon. I sensed it was time to begin assembling my thoughts. I set-up an easel on which I mounted a 20″ x 34″ pad of paper. It occurred to me that I had a plastic box full of colored markers in the garage somewhere and I retrieved them. Across the top, I wrote “If You Can Breathe, You Can Meditate” and then I began laying out my talking points; but, they came to me in a variety of colors and penmanship. Sometimes neatly aligned but more often than not, they fell in and out of the margin.
The words flowed continuously until I had filled nine pages of why, when, how, what if, time, place, etc., etc.. It had taken about three hours. The next day, I chose music and meditations to complete the “gestalt.” All set and ready to go.
The process of designing a workshop or seminar is challenging. You have participants with varying ways of learning, varying attention spans, possibly different goals for the time spent and just different mind sets. How to make an impact and address individual needs is of foremost concern… but, that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun and rewarding for the presenter. I really enjoyed this process and had a sense of accomplishment and pleasure at the creative flow of the material and the whole-brained approach to the subject of meditation.