WOW: wishing well

Logo Blue diamond This week in class we practised a simple mindfulness meditation exercise which focuses on feelings of wellness and wellbeing.

The WOW phrase stands for ‘wishing ourselves well, wishing others well’. It is important to wish ourselves well if we are to be able to help, support and be compassionate towards others. We can then begin to wish others well: people who are suffering, people we know, people we don’t know, people we may not like. They can all be offered wellbeing and happiness.

This idea of wishing ourselves and other wellbeing is very similar to the metta bhavana (loving kindness) meditation of the Buddhist tradition, but I came across it as day 10 of the 25 days of peace by the Clear Mind Institute (CMI). The CMI are producing short (five minutes) videos for 25 days. Each day is a guided five minute talk about that particular concept e.g. kindness, friendship. It’s not too late to join as all the videos are available on their YouTube playlist.

You could either listen to the five minute guided talk, or do it on your own. Sit comfortably, close the eyes, and begin just to focus on your breathing. And then introduce the phrase “wishing ourselves well, wishing others well” to the mind as you breathe. Don’t change your normal breathing pattern. Some people like to visualise the others they are wishing wellness towards, maybe somebody specific, or a group of people, and send them a special message e.g. ‘may they happy’ or ‘may they be calm’. Don’t forget to include yourself, and send yourself loving kindness, wellbeing, joy. You can continue this practice for as long as you have available, be it one minute, five, 10 or more.

And then during the day, try to remember ‘WOW’ every now and again and send a quick message of wellbeing to yourself and others.

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