Are you anxious stressed mind racing. Do you have trouble sleeping? Are you looking for secrets to peace? And a happier life joints be way jefferson certified mindfulness practitioner and lawyer dedicated to helping you learn to apply mindfulness meditation to the personal and professional challenges of everyday life harness the power of mindfulness meditation to live and work to your highest and best purpose. Starting with just five minutes a day. Yeah, trigger alert. The content discussed in this episode. Maybe triggering for people who have suffered from childhood and other traumas. If you are vulnerable in that way, I encourage you to skip this episode or to listen to it with someone who can help you through it.
The Mindful in five series is not intended to provide medical, legal or other advice. I encourage anyone who needs such guidance or who needs professional help to seek it from a qualified professional in that respective field. Mm hmm. Happy Independence Day America. Today the United States commemorates the passage of the Declaration of Independence by the Continental Congress on july 4th 17 76 marking its independence from british rule. Mm latin countries had to do that. Uh, my home country of Zimbabwe Marked its independence from British rule on April 18, 1980. That recently, Yes, so back to the United States. Unfortunately, this did not mark independence for all americans because the Africans who had been stolen from their motherland and forcibly shipped to the United States and enslaved were not notified of their freedom until the holiday we celebrate as juneteenth Short for June 19 This is the day when federal troops arrived in Galveston texas in 1865 to take control of the state and make sure that all enslaved people knew of their freedom and were actually freaked.
And yes, if you know your american history and have done the math, that was a full 2.5 years after the signing of the emancipation proclamation. Hi and welcome to mindful in five where we learn how to apply mindfulness and meditation to the challenges of everyday life in bite sized episodes for people with no time. Yeah, I'm talking a year, my name is vera jefferson and today as we reflect on freedom, we are talking about the worst prison. No, I'm not talking about Diyarbakir in southeastern Turkey, considered to be one of the worst prisons in the world. Nor am I talking about La Sabaneta located in Venezuela. I'm not talking about the adx Florence Supermax prison in colorado or the tag more prison in Syria.
All of these are considered some of the worst prisons in the world. No, I am talking about a prison even worse than these. Why is it so terrible? Well, because first you don't even have to be a hardened criminal to be present there. Not only that, but you can receive a life sentence from which you are never ever freed, imprisonment costs you the freedom to fully realize the value of who you are and all that you can be both to yourself and to others in this life. So do you know what the worst prison is? Well, the worst prison is? Yeah. The prison of negative thought habits. It is the prison of your mind feeling skeptical.
Let me tell you a quick story. Once upon a time, I was at a meditation conference where I met this lovely sunny lady, We got to talking and within the first five minutes she shared with me that she had been molested as a child. She now looked to be in her mid to late 40s. And I expressed how sorry I was that she had experienced such a trauma. The conversation moved on and she shared an idea that she had for a book. That's a great idea. I said, have you written it? Well, no, she said, because you see, I was molested as a child. The conversation continued, and by and by she talked about a business idea she had. That's a great idea. I said, have you started working on this amazing venture? Well, no, she said, I can't. Because you see, I was molested as a child. This is how the rest of the conversation continued. She had so many great ideas, she wished she could have pursued.
But I felt like she couldn't because she had been molested. Do you see now why this is the worst prison. It doesn't even have to make logical sense for you to find yourself stuck there. You may not even realize you are in prison. Sometimes the habit of misery is often worse than misery itself, it follows you everywhere. You could be surrounded with the best opportunities and still see no further than the bars of your worst prison. I realized this is an extreme example and by the way it is a true story, I did encounter that woman at a meditation conference and we did have exactly this conversation. I'm not a medical professional by any stretch, but I do think in her case she would have needed professional help to free herself from her worst prison. And there are lots of people for whom escaped from that prison will require professional help.
This is not a place for professional assistance. I'm not a psychologist, I'm not a I'm not a trained anything that relates to the medical profession. So I encourage you if you do need professional help to seek it from people who are qualified to assist you. And there's no shame in it. Mindfulness is about being present in the moment without judgment and without being overwhelmed by what's happening around you. So no judgement here and before you scoff at the unfortunate lady that I met at that conference, let me hasten to say there are many kinds of imprisonment that most of us reside in in one form or another. There is short term incarceration in jail and there may be incarcerations that last from multiple years but are not life sentences and they are yet some kinds of incarceration that hinder you somewhat without crippling you completely.
For example, perhaps the fear of success. Yes, success stops you from doing something you really want to do. Perhaps the fear of being wrong stops you from speaking up in a meeting. Perhaps the intimidation of not being good enough stops you from fully sharing your great ideas on a T. Perhaps the fear of being a bad parent drives behaviors that may actually be harmful to your kids. Perhaps the imposter syndrome lures its ugly head and cripples your ability to be effective. Unfortunately, most of us pick up prison bars along life's journey this week. If you received the mindful in five emails, use the five day topics to guide your thinking during your daily five minute meditations. If you don't receive the companion emails to this podcast, sign up for either the classic or the God Lovers edition.
To Mindful in Five at Mindful in five dot com. The God Lovers edition is for people who want to invite God into their meditation space and practice. Sign up for the classic edition. If you do not want a God centered focus in your meditation. So go in peace and take five minutes of silence to go within and see whether and to what extent you are living in your own worst prison until next week. This is beware saying, Be mindful and be well, thank you for listening to mindful in Five, join the Mindful in Five community at www. Dot Mindful in five dot com. To sign up for the weekly companion emails to this podcast, which include a new guided meditation each month and five day, five minute meditations. To supercharge your journey towards inner peace and success, visit the instagram page at Mindful in Five or the facebook page at Spey Way Publications.
Until next time. Be mindful and be well.