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Nerdwarts SURPRISE Mini #5: Practice your Occlumency!

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We work hard and play hard here at Nerdwarts, but sometimes, we should settle down and take a breath... clear our minds... and regain our focus.  Meditation has loads of benefits, and in weeks 5 and 6, where the shine wears off the challenge and energy starts to flag, we can all use a bit of extra focus as we attempt to stay on track and keep that dark magic that causes backsliding out of our heads.  Never meditated before?  Don't worry!  You'll have a lot of options and techniques to try, and to ensure you don't have to hurry, this particular mini will run for the rest of the duration of this challenge.  Hopefully, instead of interfering with your own training and/or other Nerdwarts activities, it will assist you in staying happy and healthy!  




Between now and the end of the challenge, every Assassin will have the opportunity to try out a number of different meditation techniques, working to regain our focus in the face of exhaustion.



For the purposes of this mini challenge, I'm offering a short (by no means exhaustive) list of meditation methods:

  1. Guided Meditation: Need a bit of help to get started?  Not to worry.  Try this resource for a number of free guided meditation tracks from various sites.  It's as simple as following directions.  :)
  2. Present Moment Meditation: A meditation method that many people are familiar with, which involves relaxing and focusing on the moment, starting with your breath, then expanding to your sensations and everything around you, then contracting back to simply your breathing.
  3. Candle Gazing: This meditation method is good for regaining wandering focus.  Light a candle and watch the flame.  Observe your thoughts as they come in and out of your mind, but keep bringing your focus back to the flame.  There are many online resources where you can read more about this method.
  4. Visualization: A method that can be either very simple or very complex depending on how you approach it, this involves visualizing something (most often an outcome, a desired future state, etc) and embellishing on the visualization to the exclusion of other thoughts.  You can find a variety of resources on this method, and if you prefer not to focus on real-life goals but rather on some imaginary place or emotion that brings you positive feelings (imagine yourself at the seaside, smell the air, hear the surf, etc), that's fine, too!  Whatever you visualize, embellish the mental image continuously, recruit all your senses, and get away from your other thoughts for awhile.

There are, of course, many other options out there, but these four ought to provide something to try for anyone who doesn't know where to begin.  If you prefer a method that isn't listed here, that's fine, too.


Every Assassin who participates must log 30 minutes of meditation total between now and the end of the challenge to help their House earn some last minute points!  Try a new method of meditation, or repeat an old favorite.  If you find a particularly good guided track, share it here!  The idea is to get a bit of chill time in between all of your other activities... even as you work on your AMRAPs and your Quidditch games and any other mini challenges that may pop up....


This mini-challenge lasts until Sunday, 7/19 at 11:59PM EST... so chill and take your time!





Still need to sign up for a House? PM Hazard to be Sorted.


Normal Mini-Challenge Rules

- Mini-challenges are not mandatory, feel free to ignore this one if you don't want to participate. Don't let mini-challenges hinder your own goals.

- If you're not sure how to register something, post it here.

- Keep it simple!

- Don't hurt yourself!

Every Assassin who completes this mini-challenge gets +1 WIS for working on their focus!

Assassins, remember to be safe and have fun!

  • Like 6

🎪current challenge🎪

challenge archive: 19181716 | 15 | 14 | 13 | 12 | 11 | 10 | 9 | 8 | 7 | 6 | 5 | 4 | 3 | 2 | 1

instagram | goodreads

"Let us read, and let us dance; these two amusements will never do any harm to the world." - Voltaire

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This is exactly what I need this week!! My mood has been crap since yesterday and I don't see it getting better, but this mini might just do the trick. ^_^

  • Like 1

Vicki | Sheikah Bard | Level 13

STR 32.5 | DEX 51.1 | STA 25.5 | CON 37.1 | WIS 26.0 | CHA 31.3

blkhoe24601 Gains the Power to Revolutionize the World

Past Challenges: 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13

2016 Battle Log

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Here I am all "I don't meditate" and then read through the description of present moment meditation like "oh that's meditation?!" I guess I do and I didn't know it! And probably need to employ it more often... Maybe I WILL practice occlumency! :)

  • Like 2

Assassin extraordinaire!!

Current Challenge

 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34

                                               35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41

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Funny, I was thinking to myself last night, while helping my daughter go to sleep, about this challenge and the associate minis. Each time I have gotten really excited but then haven't been able to keep up. I recognize that it is okay, really, considering everything going on right now. (Our fourth child is due tomorrow, but probably won't come for another week, and there is so much to do to get ready; among a number of other things happening concurrently). So, even though I have been slipping on the challenges they have still gotten me to do much more than I would have during this stressful time.


As a result I was considering the next challenge (which is going to be just as, if not more, stressful). I decided that I would hop over to the Druids for that one and focus on peace-of-mind (with some meditation) while still getting a bit of mobility (try out a little yoga). To my pleasant surprise today I discovered a mini to help jump-start my efforts! So, yes, lets rock this mini (where have I heard that before)! 


This guild is awesome and I will be back after the next challenge! Oh, and first minutes posted :P

  • Like 2

L2 Dwarf Assassin (w/ Druidic tendencies)

Current challenge: Seeking rest, focus, and peace of mind.

Previous challenges: RespawnTime to get mobile, & Building assassin necessities

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meditation… the thing I want to love but somehow can't get myself to love… well… here goes another attempt.

"Unfocused" Wizard // Rationalist of the order of Bayes

Lvl 5 Assassin. Lvl 33 Jack of all trades. 7 STR|6 DEX|7 STA|7 CON|16 WIS|8 CHA

Current challenge Wizard in the making: ero san's continuing road of magic

My drawings Sketchbook, Other afiliations The Loft

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My first thought upon reading the title was "...We're going to practice keeping secrets...? Whaaaaat?" but then I read it and now I'm all excited.


I typically have a hard time doing almost any form of meditation, but a guided body scan is seriously the best thing since ever. We occasionally do this in my therapy sessions and I'll sometimes do them to help chill out before bed if I'm a little too wired. In fact, I'm pretty sure that's happening tonight. I use the body scans over on My Yoga Works (which is a subscription service, but has a free trial. I've enjoyed it quite a bit :)

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I am a big fan of calm.com. I think I found out about it through one of Steve's blog posts, but I really enjoy it's guided meditations. I use the 2 minute guided first thing in the morning at work and it is nice.

  • Like 1


Level 1 Half-Elf Druid Assassin

Current Challenge

"If You Can't Love Yourself How In The Hell Are You Gonna Love Somebody Else?" - RuPaul Charles

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This is great, my world just got really busy on me this week and this is going to do me a whole lotta good :D

  • Like 2

"What doesn't kill me better start running", level 7 Furyan Assassin
My Journey From Fat to Fit: 1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8|9|10|11|12|13|CURRENT

A proud member of the Champion House; Targaryen (Assassin's mini), Hufflepuff bravery is forgetting to be afraid because the thing is so important that the risk doesn't even matter (Assassin's mini) , Hellfire Club represent! (Assassin's mini)

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oooooh this is something I can do, yay!!!

  • Like 1

Level 18 Wood-Elf Assassin


battle log: counting the good things

current challenge: something, nothing, all the things

previous challenges: 25242322212019181716, 151413121110987654, 321


How cool is it that the same God who created mountains and oceans and galaxies looked at you and thought the world needed one of you, too

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I love focusing on breath and being in the moment, sharpening senses, listening to the slight rain (or birds singing, or cars going past, whatever), relaxing any muscles not needed, smiling as I breathe in relaxing as I breath out.... it's quite delicious and I really appreciate this mini making us all take the time for it, thank you!

Level 18 Wood-Elf Assassin


battle log: counting the good things

current challenge: something, nothing, all the things

previous challenges: 25242322212019181716, 151413121110987654, 321


How cool is it that the same God who created mountains and oceans and galaxies looked at you and thought the world needed one of you, too

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Meditation has helped me sooo much in the last year, but it's been hard to fit in the last few weeks. This is a great motivator to make time for it again. My favorites are the shorter guided meditations and half hour podcasts from the MARC center at UCLA:



SpiralGalaxy, Level 9 Halfling Elf Assassin
STR 17|DEX 13|STA 20|CON 13|WIS 21|CHA 15
Electromagnetics Engineer, Freelance sci-fi critic in Maryland

"I'm not telling you it's going to be easy, I'm telling you it's going to be worth it." 

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Mal:  You could've got off with Shepherd Book at the Bathgate Abbey. Could'a been meditating on the wonders of your rock garden by now. 
Jayne:  Beats just sittin'. 
Wash:  It *is* just sitting. 

  • Like 4

Very old battle log
Previous Challenges: 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
Previous Mini Challenges: 2, 1

Assassin: Extremely competitive, tends to bust out bodyweight exercises when faced with waiting in hiding, and loves a good team vs team faceoff.  - Alexandrite

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Perfect, I planned to mediate today on lunch! This is something I absolutely love and enjoy but don't make enough time for...sad face. Thanks for the tip Miska! I like to listen to neo-classical music while I mediate and I'm always down to try something new!



  • Like 1

Wild Wolf- LEVEL 2 (but probably more like lvl 50 if I didn't respawn so much)

Class: Howler/ Height: 6'2 / Weight: 192#


Instagram: @ryanwolfbell / Facebook: Ryan Wolf Bell / Bible App (YouVersion) Ryan Wolf Bell

Current Challenge: Omnis Vir Lupus


Last Challenge(s): 1/2/3/4/5/6/7/8/9/10/11/12/13/14/15/16

Unchained Predator Saga: 1

Epic Challenges: Welcome to the Fireteam & Wolfpool 


Know, O prince, that once the sun burns out and the earth's core becomes solid and cold, there will come a man to provide the endless energy needed to sustain life and for the planets to keep moving. He is the source of light and the warmth of hope back into the hearts of humanity...." - Dark_Raider


A wolf rises in my heart; against my darkness; against my demons; against my despair. I DECLARE WAR!


Romans 8:28 (CSB) We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God, who are called according to His purpose.


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Although it's not in my nature to sit still and be in the moment I'm going for it!  I have a yoga mat in my room for stretching but last night I rolled it out for meditation.  I am using guided meditation since I tend to go on auto pilot when left to my own devices.  So far I've done 14 minutes!

  • Like 1

Rock Gnome Assassin

Lvl 28



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I should probably mention that lately I've been using Deepak Chopra's Conscious Health and Infinite Abundance apps. They cost money to get all the lessons but a few are free in each app and they're REALLY lovely.

They consist of a moment of guided reflection and then some silent meditation and you can mix-and-match the lessons and music. Definitely worth checking out the free bits at least!

Level 4 Assassin 

Hufflepuff House

Sunlit Embraces Earth and Sea - Current Challenge

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NSFW language, but relevant:


  • Like 11

Raptron, alot assassin

67666564636261605958 575655545352515049484746454443424140393837363534333231302928272625242322212019181716151413121110987 | 6 | 5 | 4 | 3 | 2 | 1

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