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Taking the One-Seat: Finding Strength in the Eye of the Storm

In the hustle and bustle of our daily lives, it's easy to get swept away by the chaos, losing sight of our center amidst the whirlwind of responsibilities and challenges. For many of us, myself included, the past month has been a testament to this truth. As the demands of work piled up and the pressure mounted, I found myself grappling with stress and uncertainty like never before.

In moments of overwhelm, I turned to my meditation and breathwork practices as a lifeline, seeking refuge in what meditation teachers Jack Kornfield and Jeff Warren aptly call "Taking the One Seat." This simple yet profound concept resonated deeply with me, offering a beacon of light in the midst of darkness. Jack Kornfield learned this practice from his teacher, Achaan Chah, who described the practice to him this way:

Just go into the room and put one chair in the center. Take the seat in the center of the room, open the doors and the windows and see who comes to visit. You will witness all kinds of scenes and actors, all kinds of temptations and stories, everything imaginable. Your only job is to stay in your seat. You will see it all arise and pass, and out of this, wisdom and understanding will come. --Jack Kornfield, A Path with Heart

Taking the one seat is about creating a compassionate space within ourselves, allowing all thoughts and emotions to arise without judgment or resistance. It's about finding the courage to sit in the eye of the storm, amidst the chaos and turmoil, and simply be present with whatever arises.

For me, this practice became a sanctuary—a sacred refuge where I could witness the rush of thoughts and emotions swirling around me without getting swept away by them. With each breath, I anchored myself in the present moment, gently reminding myself to come back to the one seat whenever I felt tempted to grab onto something or get pulled into the chaos.

It's important to acknowledge that taking the one seat is not easy.

It requires patience with oneself, perseverance, and an open-hearted willingness to be with the discomfort that arises when we come face to face with our inner turmoil. But it's also a practice that holds tremendous power—a power to ground us in who we truly are, to empower us in the face of adversity, and to energize us with a renewed sense of purpose and vitality.

In addition to meditation, I also delved even more deeply into my breathwork practices, and especially the practice of conscious connected breathwork.

This is a powerful technique that involves engaging in intentional, rhythmic breathing to access profound states of awareness and healing. Through this practice, I discovered the transformative potential of breath, as it helped release tension and the unhelpful stories (aka lies) I was telling myself, shed emotional baggage, and bring about a profound sense of centeredness and vitality. Through the practice, I felt like I had transmuted into a Jedi, a sort of fierce--and loving--Princess Leia, calm, centered, certain, and fierce.

As I reflect on my journey over the past month, I'm reminded of the importance of nurturing our inner strength and vitality. Daily meditation and breathwork, which can be done in fewer than 10-20 minutes a day can be combined with a regular cleaning out--whether that's a conscious connected breathwork session, melting into a beautiful sound bath, going for a hard run in the woods, or throwing axes with friends,

If you're interested in learning the fundamentals of daily breathwork, to tap energy when you need it, or find calm and centeredness when you need that, reach out to talk with me about 1:1 breathwork sessions.

Or if you're in for an adventure, check out one of my upcoming transformative breathwork journeys. Next up is "Empower & Energize," on March 31st.

This transformative event is designed to tap into the wellspring of energy within each of us, providing a powerful boost to propel us forward on our journey. Through intentional breath, specially curated music, and guided exploration, we'll discover the innate power that resides in our core, shedding the weight of fatigue and embracing a renewed sense of vitality. We'll harness the transformative potential of breath to empower our bodies, minds, and souls. Together, we'll ignite our inner strength and revitalize our spirits, as we take the one seat and tap into our power to ignite our true selves.


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