If you have ever had a meditation practise then you will know just what it is like to struggle with meditation. It is something I am having a problem with at the moment and keep finding reasons not to meditate or to meditate for less time that usual.
The question is where does this resistance come from and why do you feel it? Well the way I see it is that when you meditate you remove all the barriers between the physical and metal states. This also means you can connect with the real you, the one you hide under the many layers designed to help you survive, fit in and just be more popular.
It is inevitable that at some point you will come across something you really do not want to face. It may be that, like me, after several months of successful meditation you suddenly lose interest. This could be that in the initial stages of meditation you are calming and grounding yourself and remove all of the big noise in your life, but then the hard work begins.
I know that for me when things become hard work I will try and avoid them, backed up by the pile of paperwork in my office, and the work needed in meditation is harder than most you will come across. The aim has to be to overcome this resistance in order to get real benefits from meditation. I am still working on these difficulties but have come up with a list of things that will help with this issue:
- Set a Time – a great way to stick to your meditation practise is to set a regular time to meditate, so think about the best time for you. For me it is first thing in the morning but for you it might be 12pm or 6pm or whenever you can get time to yourself.
- Create a Sacred Place – this does not have to be a religious alter or anything like that but just somewhere where you can be quite and comfortable and will allow you to be dedicated to your practise. I have a space set up in my bedroom but strangely enough I prefer meditating in the summer when I can sit outside, it is whatever works for you
- Take Time for Yourself – this seems like an obvious point but it is how you approach your meditation. Think of it as a time where you can just be quiet and away from all the demands of your life. Most of us have people wanting things from us all day, there is constant noise and we never get to sit and be quiet, meditation is a wonderful time to do this.
- Share your Plans – tell your loved ones about your meditation plans and when you want to do it. Ask them to help you to ensure you practise then and that they do not disturb you for the length of time you want to meditate. Having support is always a great way to stick to something.
- Find a Group Meditation – I live very close to the North London Buddhist centre where I can go everyday to meditate if I want. Look for a meditation group close to you, meditating in a group can really ignite your passion and get you back on track.
- Little and Often – If you find it difficult to set aside a chunk of time to meditate then think about doing small meditations throughout the day, say 3 lots of 5 minutes. You will still get some benefit and it might help you to stick to it.