It's September and I need to start making some money. The TEFL market in Madrid is waking up from its summer slumber and I need to be the early bird pecking the ground for worms. It's a cowboy business with little job security or loyalty at the best of times but with the Spanish belt tightening, I'm not sure if this is still a teacher's market. I've got half my schedule filled but the blocks of hours aren't my ideal. Oh well. Can't get too picky at this early stage. This is the third school year I've weathered here in Madrid and you'd think I'd be a seasoned pro with no worries and some sort of job security by now. Nope, it's still a stressful chaos of uncertainty. It's a freelance dice game with no guarantees. For example, the large block of 18 hours per week I had last year has been reduced to a paltry 6 hours. Companies can change their minds last minute so no one can bank on anything. Currently, I've accepted classes from two academies and I'm still in negotiation with one other. And I'm getting some response from the mass blast of my CV I sent out a month ago but they seem to want to pay below average wages so screw 'em. I'm not that desperate yet. Fingers crossed. Hopefully it'll all work out. Chin up and all that. I just wish I didn't get the onset of depression and despair when uncertainty looms large. It's not very helpful.
So no surprise, I awoke with a knotted heavy heart this morning. To dissolve this heaviness I've been looking for more meditation techniques to get tranquila. Today I went back to Eric Maisel's podcasts and tried out his Ten Zen Seconds method, which combines Eastern mindfulness practices and Western cognitive psychology. By combining deep breathing and positive phrases (he calls them incantations) you can get centered. For example, you breathe in for 5 seconds and breathe out for 5 while saying, "I expect nothing" or "I make my meaning." The trick is to say half the sentence breathing in and the other half breathing out and to do it every day. Break old habits with new habits. So this is the latest addition to my 1 hour meditation regiment. I'll let you know how it works out.
If any of you have leads on other types of meditation practices, things you do to stay calm, I'd love to hear from you.