Smoke and Mirrors – An Empowering Meditation

For Canadians, it’s Thanksgiving this weekend. While many people love holidays and long weekends, these are not always happy times for everyone.

Maybe you adore holidays, or maybe you just try to get through them.

You may have zero family or friends. Or may you have oodles.

For those who are inundated—I mean…surrounded—by said oodles of loved ones, maybe you adore all of them.

Or perhaps you desperately try to survive them.

For me, I’ve now reclaimed the year’s holidays, but it was a work in progress for several years. Perhaps I’ll write more about that process around the December holidays, which were the most painful for me.

Today’s post is short, though. It’s mostly a simple, empowering meditation for you, regardless of where you’re finding yourself this holiday weekend or whether you’re feeling amazing or less so.

It can take as long as you’d like it to take. And although it’s obviously up to you, I do recommend doing some journaling about it afterward to take stock of your experience.

As always, remember to reach out for appropriate supports if you do believe it would benefit you.

The meditation

Step 1: Grounding and gratitude

  • Before you begin, take a few slow, easy breaths.
  • As you breathe, settle yourself physically and make sure you feel physically comfortable.
  • Begin to slow your breath a bit, making sure you’re breathing into your belly.
  • Imagine that you’re breathing down into the base of your pelvis.
  • Now think of something (small or big) in your life that you’re happy you have in your life.
    • Maybe it’s your very favourite pumpkin spice tea. Maybe it’s the time you have to yourself in your commute to work in your vehicle. Maybe it’s that podcast you love. Maybe it’s a friend or other loved one (human or animal) who means a great deal to you.
  • Spend a few moments fully immersing yourself in thinking about that person/thing/experience, how much you enjoy them, how lovely it is to have them in your life.
  • Then, ask your inner higher wisdom for guidance and help in this meditation. It can be as simple as that, like, “To my higher wisdom, help me and guide me in this meditation. Thank you.”

Step 2: Smoke and mirrors

  • Imagine you’re looking at yourself in a mirror.
  • Let the image settle for a few moments until you can see yourself in the mirror.
  • Now think of something that has been bothering you lately. It could be a small thing or a big thing, doesn’t matter.
  • As you keep looking in the mirror, imagine there’s some smoke surrounding you in your reflection. Imagine that the smoke is that thing that’s been weighing on your mind.
  • Allow yourself to see the smoke swirling. Notice its colour, texture, density.
  • Take a breath, imagining you’re breathing in from the very top of your head (don’t worry, you’re only breathing in good air, no smoke).
  • Breathe out from your mouth, and notice that some of the smoke of the bad feelings is coming out of your body, and it’s joining the rest of the swirling smoke around you.
  • Keep breathing in the clean air from the top of your head, and breathing out the bad smoke from your mouth.
  • Are you still holding in any of the feelings of this thing that’s been bothering you? Let out all that bad smoke.
  • Take a moment and look at your reflection, see yourself surrounded by the swirling smoke.
  • Now, imagine you have a paint brush in your hands.
  • This is your personal, powerful paintbrush. With it, you can transmute all this smoke into something awesome.
  • Look at yourself in the mirror again, and see yourself holding the paintbrush.
  • Now, as you look at yourself in the mirror, start to sweep the paintbrush over and through the smoke.
  • You notice that as you do this, the paintbrush turns the smoke into beautiful, bright, shimmering mist.
  • The mist is in any and all colours that feel happy to you.
  • Keep sweeping your paintbrush all around the smoke, and watch how it continues to turn all the smoke into beautiful, shimmering, colourful mist.
  • Continue sweeping your paintbrush until all the smoke has been turned into the beautiful mist.
  • If any of the smoke comes back, that’s okay, just let it out, and sweep your paintbrush on it.
  • Then look at yourself in the mirror again, surrounded by the colourful, shimmering, healthy mist.
  • You see yourself in the mirror, and you know that the mist is still part of you, and now it’s happy, beautiful, and empowered.

Step 3: Regrounding

  • Take another nice, gentle, deep breath into your pelvis, imagining you’re breathing in from the top of your head.
  • Imagine you’re breathing out through the bottoms of your feet.
  • Do two more of these grounding breaths.
  • Begin to gentle wiggle your physical fingers and toes to bring yourself back to the present physical moment. Gently blink open your eyes.

Bonus step: Contemplation/journaling

If you have time and space, I recommend getting out your journal and reflecting a bit on your meditation.

  • Did anything unexpected come up for you?
  • What colours emerged when you used your paintbrush?
  • Thinking about the thing that’s been bothering you, how are you feeling about it now?
  • What new thoughts or insights are you having about that issue?
  • What is one small thing you can do to help yourself feel more empowered in that situation?

I hope you enjoy this meditation! Let me know how it goes.

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