A MALA miracle: discipline!

So it’s the end of winter, beginning of spring- and suddenly came a realization: I already failed miserably at my New Year’s resolution! What was it? To be more disciplined. Why a resolution for discipline rather than one to be healthier, happier, thinner, or to take more vacations?
By discipline I mean intentionally taking the time to do more of what I want rather than wasting time with things like social media, procrastination, or idle conversations just to fill space. Truly I knew that if I spent more time actually getting to the things I wanted to do with my precious time, all of these typical resolutions of happiness and health would either not matter, or through discipline would occur on their own.
When struck with the realization of how off track my life is looking from the life I dreamed of, it is time for one thing, and one thing only: A deeper meditation practice.
So I had a plan in December of 2015. I started having a dedicated time to sit and meditate. I have been practicing meditation for over 10 years but I often start and stop. When I meditate I am happier, less stressed, and kinder. It shifts my perspective so that I am more able to see the world as a friendly and amazing place. So why do I stop?
In a word: discipline. I tend to lose my sense of self. By that I mean in a moment I am suddenly thinking about all the things I have to do- laundry, shopping, getting to yoga, etc.… I end up wasting precious time not even getting to these things, but thinking about them. It is a viscous cycle. The truth is I planned to become more disciplined by getting to a morning meditation and using the mantra, I am disciplined. (Note I change the affirmation, prayer, or mantra every couple of days when I am spending time meditating). That lasted for about a month and by then my schedule was lost.
So what of all of this? Failing at my New Year’s resolution is not really the end of the world, but what is worse is that I am caught in some patterns of fear and anxiety that are interfering with my overall health, happiness, and pursuit of my dreams. I had hoped my renewed discipline in my meditation practice would help.
Then an extraordinary thing happened (have you ever noticed that if you pay attention to your struggles, there is a message in them?). And this time it was a thing: A Mala.
A friend asked me to help locate and buy supplies for a mala she wanted to create. No big deal, that kind of thing is normal around here. Within a week, another friend who leads blessings and meditations asked me to create a special mala for a special event this month.
I knew what a mala was, but never bought one. They reminded me of the rosary my grandmother kept wrapped up next to her crumpled Kleenex and for that reason I wasn’t particularly drawn to mala beads.
So my friend had come to me because she knows I believe in the power of all things within (our spirit), and of course it helped that I am also known for creating jewelry of intention. Her request: 80 malas to represent the special weekend event and about 100 more that are more unique and less expensive so that everyone who wanted a mala could find what they are looking for. So I took the next step.
I did some research; I had a lot of questions. What is a mala? Who makes them? How do they work? What makes them authentic? Why are they numbered? What is the best design? The list went on and on. The greatest research I did was the research that proved to me once again that living a life in spirit is a life full of miracles. I began using a mala for meditation and I AM disciplined.
Yes, today I can honestly say (and I take it one day at a time), my life is once again in my dream rather than above it or below it. Is it the mala? I would say yes, and here is why. For those of us who are not exactly able to maintain a schedule, rather than finding time or a place for meditation, the mala finds you. You can wear it, carry it, keep it by your favorite chair, your bed, wherever. It is there waiting. For right now, I need that mala. I need simple. It is helping me and I am taking the gift.
I can meditate without it sure, but it wouldn’t be the same. It is a more disciplined practice. You hold a bead and say a short affirmation, you move to the next bead. If your mind wanders, you stay and breathe.
That is all I do, and all meditation requires. 108 beads/108 affirmations. This can take me 10 minutes or 40. My bliss has returned and yes, I am disciplined enough to do this every day. The results have been so phenomenal. And that little bit of discipline has seeped into my other activities.
What else? Everyone at Made As Intended has become mala happy. We created simple ones, a special one for the blessing, and are excited at the possibilities. We are a conscious company. We would actually never make anything without everyone being on board with the reasons, and talking about the meditation practice needed to even touch and string a mala. We are built on the intention of creating deeper conversations. We want to know WHO AM I? WHY AM I HERE? While there are some exceptions to a higher awareness, consciousness, and happiness, meditation is almost without fail a door to take you to the peace that is beyond words or understanding.

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