Activity 4: Guided Meditation
Activity time: 20 minutes
Introduce the activity, saying:
Following our middle-age years, the next life stage deserves a respectful label, like elderhood instead of old people. Elderhood years present a gift of time when a person can grow spiritually as they acknowledge and connect with their deeper self. These years allow us to reflect on past experiences with understanding and earned wisdom. When we meditate we connect with our inner self. I invite you now to join me in a guided meditation.
Lead a guided meditation using these or similar words:
Begin by sitting comfortably in your chair with both feet on the floor and uncrossed. Your eyes can be open or closed.
Breathe. Simply breathe. In and out, in and out. Notice the movement of the air as you breathe. Breathe in enough oxygen to feel movement in your body and allow your belly and then your chest to expand.
Exhale. Let go of everything that does not seem vital to your life at this moment.
Breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in. Breathe out. Allow each inhale to be deeper, every exhale to fully release the breath. Feel energy move and shift in your body as your cells oxygenate. Continue with this breathing.
At the same time, waken your senses and be present to yourself and your surroundings. Notice what attracts your attention and stay with that for a moment and then let it go. Let it go.
As you continue with the relaxed breathing, imagine you are moving along the pathway to one of your favorite outdoor places with its awe-inspiring view. Stop and take in what is around you. Notice that sitting on a bench is a young person. That person turns out to be you, the you of many years ago. Say hello and sit down next to your younger self. It is good to be there together. You, the older and wiser person, tell them that you remember a difficult time they endured. (Pause.) Acknowledge the courage they had at the time. Realize that your younger self did as well as possible at the time for someone their age. (Pause.) Give them a warm, reassuring hug and let them know that things will be all right. (Pause.) Stay with them a moment longer while you experience the warmth of being with your younger self. (Pause.) Tell them you are always there for them and will reconnect. (Pause.) Then turn and head back along the pathway. When you are ready, come back into this place and time.
Ask “How was that for you?” and invite responses.