I’ve never been a fan of gigs.
As much as I enjoy music, I’d rather watch it on telly with the cats than out there dealing with loud noises, crowds and the heights-based-panic that usually sets in when I have to walk down stadium stairs without railings.
Unfortunately, Mr. G lives for live music. So as a dutiful girlfriend, every now and then I just have to suck it up.
We both love British band, Muse, and I know that they’re famed for their live shows… so I really decided that I was going to not only just cope at this one; that I wasn’t going to stand there with a sour face, longing to be anywhere else; that I was going to enjoy myself. I set an intention to be as mindful as I possibly could.
Basically, I was going to treat the whole gig like it was an active meditation.
I wasn’t going to be in phone. I wasn’t going to get pissed off every time some drunkard knocked into me (wasn’t entirely successful on that front!) I wasn’t going to be in my head, feeling awkward and self-conscious. I was simply going to try and be in the moment as much as possible, seeing, hearing and feeling.
And you know what? I managed it!
As I stood, amongst the people, I not only saw and heard the music, but I felt it. I repeatedly closed my eyes and felt the vibrations of it, in my feet, in my hands, even in my chest.
Not only did I enjoy the music – Muse were just fantastic – but even more surprising to me was that I was actually enjoying the crowd experience; the noise of thousands of people, all seeing, hearing and feeling the same magic emanating from the stage, and the sense of connection that this brought about.
I guess this is what people mean when they talk about atmosphere and crowd experience?!
As far as I can see it, there’s no better testament to the power of mindfulness, if it can be used to help a socially-anxious, party-pooping introvert like me to actually have a good time in this kind of environment.
Without booze! *Gasp*