Teaching meditation classes for over twenty years, there is always at least one person who claims “I can’t meditate”! If you are one of those people, I have good news, I can help you. That is if you are willing to just settle down and try again. Yes, no, maybe? Ok, I can work with that…
Let’s examine this “I can’t meditate” issue and get you back in the game. Here’s the short answer: Your mind wandering endlessly is a very normal human process, it just works that way. 5000 years of humans meditating has shown that your mind will become much more still with time and practice, so give yourself a month or two to learn this process.
The point is to realize that your mind wandered and by gently bringing your attention back to the meditation object which is your breath. Easy right? Don’t wait for that special mystical moment or perfect mental state to arrive. Just be content with each present moment in each breath you take.
Science says that the grey matter in parts of the brain which regulate meditation will increase in meditators who practiced for 6 weeks or more. It also reduced impulses and mind chatter. This is truly something we all can use!
So You Think You Can’t Meditate? Give me just five minutes and I will change your mind. You deserve this!
Another study on happiness found out people are only sad when they are in mind chatter mode. Thus the solution is mindfulness meditation as this increases concentration and the awareness state of the brain.
Everyone knows that meditation is a great and healthy solution to our troubles, however trying to meditate every day much less twice a day can be a real challenge for most people.
Well, that’s where I come in and save the day! Really? Well, I can try, can’t I?
Check out this Sadhguru’s Brilliant Answer on Why Meditation Doesn’t Work For Many People | Mystics of India | 1,370,134 views
This is a question that has troubled, all the meditation practitioners at least once. In this video, a man asks Sadhguru “I have tried a lot of meditation practices but nothing has worked for me.” And then Sadhguru answers him with profound clarity and his answer is really very insightful and on point. This could be very helpful for everyone who practices yoga or meditation.
Here are 3 strategies that you can use to keep your self on track and enjoy all the benefits of meditation.
I’m so busy with my crazy life, I just can’t find the time. (Really? I thought we all had the same 24 hours each day?)
Look I’ll be honest with you. After teaching meditation for a very long time, almost everyone comes up with this excuse. But, here’s the real truth and a truly wonderful benefit of meditation.
Years of research shows that the focus and clarity you get from just 10-20 minutes of meditation even once a day will allow you to get much more production from each task and it will be completed faster.
Who couldn’t use that? Even my cat is more productive after 18 hours of meditation, (I mean sleep, sorry for the poor example).
Meditation Tip #1: Try a short 10 minute guided meditation from your phone or mp3 player when you wake up each morning and then start your day. Do this first thing each day, otherwise, you know it won’t happen at all.
This process will enhance your whole day and get you off to a positive start. Once you try this and you will wonder how you ever got going in the morning without your daily morning meditation. I personally do this every morning, it’s one of the best things that I do for myself.
It’s boring, I need to be working on all my important stuff. Like Facebook, the morning news, a bowl of stale cereal and so on…
Oh my God, it’s the 21st century, no one just sits still, how annoying. I could miss out on something important! Congress might actually do something! Ok, so don’t just sit still…
Put your mind in gear using visualization to make movies of what you want in your life. Visualizing the events in your future life oddly enough will take you into a deeper meditative state. Thinking in pictures will increase alpha brain activity which is the gateway to a deeper meditation state.
And here’s another super life-enhancing bonus, using alpha state visualization will help you develop and reach your most important goals! Sweet!
Meditation Tip #2: Start your meditation taking 3 deep but comfortable breaths, then just focus only on your normal breathing for about a minute or so. Then begin to visualize something you want that’s important to you in your life or work.
See it happening easily, fill in the details, add color, whatever works for you. Create the story for this part of your life exactly how you’d like it to be, how it would feel and the perfect end result you desire from this event.
Then, move your self back into your awareness of the room, take a nice breath and open your eyes and start your wonderful focused and productive day. This feels really good, you are now in control of your future!
My mind just won’t shut up! Is there an app for that? Yes, it’s called your brain, the first and original app for the human body. Who knew?
Here’s a very disturbing and crazy stat: the National Science Foundation says that the average person (hyped up coffee drinkers most likely have many more) has about 12,000-60,000 thoughts each and every day.
And, on top of that, 80% are negative. Plus, 95% of those are the same-old sucky thoughts that we had yesterday.
Ok, what can we do about that and change our thoughts for good?
Meditation Tip #3: When you notice that you’re thinking in words, grab your imaginary remote and change the channel to visual images. When you can think in positive pictures over on the better channel: you will help yourself in reaching those all-important life goals.
Once again, you will slow down your thoughts, your brain begins to slow down into the alpha state which will allow you to focus on realizing your dreams. Remember, what you think about, becomes your reality. If you can see it in your mind, you can become it.
Are you ready to make a change for the better in your life? To stop the struggle and begin to move into the life you want to live? I’m with you all the way, let it rip potato chip!
What do you think of when you meditate?
Lots of people think meditation is about clearing your mind or stopping all thoughts, that’s an old idea and no one (at least a normal human can’t do) Instead, just practice focusing your attention on your breath and practice coming back to your breath when your mind wanders. Stay with whatever thought or sensation arises. When thoughts or feelings arise, and they will just simply focus on your breath for about ten minutes (use a timer if needed).
How to clear your mind when meditating
Try this simple practice of controlled breathing to help set you up your meditation practice. Read through steps 1-5 and then give it a try.
- Get comfortable – Sit in a comfortable position, as comfortable as you can get. Sit up straight and relax your shoulders and muscles, just sink into your body.
- Deep breath in – Take a deep breath in through your nose. Count “one, two, three”.
- Slow breath out – Breathe out through your mouth, pucker your lips (as though you are about to whistle) and breathe out. Count “one, two, three”. Don’t hold your breath between breathing in and out, aim to keep your breath flowing smoothly like a gentle ocean.
- Deep breathing – Check you are using your diaphragm by placing your hand on your stomach for just a moment. If you are using your diaphragm you should feel your stomach move out as you breathe in and move in as you breathe out. This helps to ensure you aren’t taking shallow breaths. Remember to keep your breaths deep but comfortable, not shallow or big.
- Eyes Closed – Now close your eye and continue breathing this way until you feel relaxed.
How long should a beginner meditate?
If you are just starting out, I recommend you meditate for anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes every day. You can start with even less. Maybe try it for 1 minute in the morning. And when you can sit still and relax for that long, move to 2 minutes.
Keep it simple and make it work for you, this is “your” meditation practice. You just can’t do this the wrong way, only the way that works for you.
How many times a day should I meditate?
It’s far better to meditate every day for 5 or 10 minutes than to meditate 45 minutes once a week. For some of you, 20 minutes a day will be a good fit, if needed, work up to that amount of time then you’ll be able to do that consistently. For others, 10 minutes is the perfect amount of time for a meditation session.
What time of day should I meditate?
Before breakfast is generally a good time to meditate. But for beginners, especially if you are feeling stressed out, meditating at all can be daunting. In that case, I recommend simply putting your attention on slower, deeper breathing—even for just five minutes—early in the day before getting busy with anything. Really, just meditate for a few minutes anytime you feel the desire or need outside of your normal meditation time.