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Meditation - Calm the Mind, Release the Pain

Today's post is going to be a little bit "out there" for some of you, but it's a technique that I've found to be particularly helpful in reducing a lot of pain and stress in my life.  This is not some sort of new-age guru type stuff - this is practical relaxation of the body and mind.

This week on, our mentor J.B. Glossinger has been discussing stress and peace.  And that made me think that this would be an excellent time for me to share the way that I've been meditating (though not with any sort of regularity until this week) for years.

I learned this technique from Matt Furey when I was doing his Combat Conditioning program (which, if you're into good hard workouts that don't take long and you can do anywhere, is absolutely first-rate).  Matt is not only a top-notch fitness expert, but he also has experimented with a ton of different visualization exercises, Chinese wellness techniques, and more.  His recommendation is as follows, and I've suited it to my needs.

First, I get into a comfortable position (usually seated, though recently I've done this from the Grok Squat position or occasionally a back bridge if I'm feeling up to it) and close my eyes.  The next step I use is to begin breathing deeply - making sure to use relaxed belly-breathing.

Then, I start to envision colors:  I inhale the color white, a bright blinding-type white.  I actually imagine the white flowing into me through my nose, like some sort of sentient fog in a sci-fi movie (you're inhaling, so this should be going in through the nose!).  This is the purity, calm, and good energy that I want to fill myself with. It's healing for the entire body.  I inhale slowly, over a period of 4 to 6 seconds.  If it helps you to count that time off, go for it.  I imagine that white energy flowing into me and filling me up.

Then, I exhale the color black.  Black is all the negative energy, the stress, the pain, the negative thoughts, etc.  I imagine that black energy being pushed out of me as I exhale, again over a period of 4 to 6 seconds.  Again, count that time off if it helps you.  If some part of your body is tense or hurts, then imagine that black energy flowing out of that section of your body and leaving through the mouth (exhaling should be done through the mouth).

Inhale the white.

Exhale the black.


While you're doing this exercise, you should be clearing your head of any thoughts other than concentrating on your own breath, and the colors white and black.  If a thought of any kind comes into your head, add its presence to the black that you're pushing out.  Let it exit your body and disappear.  Don't get upset with yourself for not being able to keep your mind clear, just accept it and push it away with the black.  As J.B. says, this takes practice.  

I've found that this breathing meditation is awesome for relaxation, but also for clearing away headaches and pain.  When I have a headache I'll imagine it as the black and feel it flowing out of my head as I exhale.  I'll do this for up to 20 minutes at such times, and it really helps to remove a lot of the pain of a headache.

On occasion, I've also imagined other colors coming into me - I've found that blue is great for headache relief, as I associate blue with cooling and relief (and frequently I feel pain as heat or red).  Experiment with what works for you!

Work this into your morning (or whenever) routine.  I have recently started doing it each morning for 3-5 minutes just to center myself for the day and get nasty thoughts out of my head as I prepare to get things done and deal with the world.  It's a great part of any daily ritual!

Do you meditate?  What techniques do you use?  Let me know in the comments below! 


  1. This technique really resonates with me. I only have brief periods of time at this time of year, and often no quiet place to retreat to. I'll be test driving this and I'll let you know the progress. Thanks Jamie!

    1. Glad to hear it Janet! I like it because colors are "easy" to envision, and because you can use whatever colors work for you given the situation you're in.

  2. Reblogged this Jamie. Thank you for sharing. Jenni Whipple

  3. For those who experience physical pain when sitting on a cushion in the full lotus , burmese, half burmese or cross legged positions....try the Moonleap meditation cushion. It is ergonomically designed to help alleviate back pain, hip, leg, ankle and foot pain and numbness.

  4. Thanks Jamie, I will try this meditation. I have done something a bit similar where i inhale "smiling energy" and i exhale "grey energy" but the colours are simpler and easier to visualize. Maybe I will use orange rather than white if I want more energy,.

    1. Awesome! That's one of the beauties of this method... you can substitute whatever colors work for you!


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