Daily meditation: How many times have you told yourself that you’re going to start with it? And, found yourself doing lots of things but meditating in the morning.
You’ll do it tomorrow. This evening. Start on Monday. After the holidays. Etc etc.
You might feel like you have no willpower whatsoever when it comes to meditation.
How to get out of bed and onto your mat?!
The main problem is usually that we are conditioned to look for immediate results. If the results don’t show up immediately, it’s easy to decide that it’s not worth it. However, meditation doesn’t work like that.
We all know by now that with the benefits of meditation backed by thousands of years of practice and scientific proof, there’s not much reason left not to meditate. Somehow, though, all the meditation apps on your phone, your new meditation cushion nor your new Zen spot in the house just aren’t doing it for you. As with any new habit, it’s 200% natural to struggle to build a routine.
Here are some ways to get and stay in the flow of a daily meditation practice.
Get very clear on your “Why”
Why would you meditate?
Because ‘they’ say it’s good for you? Because the Dalai Lama does it? Because it sounds cool to say you do?
Every good vision starts with “why.” You can read articles and get lectured all day long, but without your own buy-in, it’s going to be extremely difficult to maintain a daily meditation practice.
Opportunity to success: Take out a piece of paper and free flow write for 5 minutes about why you want to meditate.
- Wanting more peace of mind, rest, and balance.
- Your negative and aggressive emotions to becoming less present.
- Having more acceptance.
- Fully realize how useless judging is.
- Understanding the power of compassion.
- Stop the useless feeding of your storyline with more drama on past or future events.
- Being more present.
- Feeling the absence of greed, hatred and delusion.
Know what’s holding you back from daily meditation
>> Do you really believe that sitting for some minutes per day will actually “work” and ‘get’ you the things mentioned above? <<
Contemplating on this question for a while might very well be the key for you. The key whether or not you will actually get on your mat or not for a daily meditation practice after reading this article.
It could very well be your limiting beliefs that prevent you from thriving. Overcome them and start rocking your meditation.
Our nature is to only invest energy into that which we believe will produce the outcome we seek. Therefore, when we believe something is not going to work out – even unconsciously – we sabotage our potential by taking halfhearted action. Little action equals lousy results. Lousy results equal uncertainty and disheartened beliefs. It is a vicious cycle that only ends when you decide to change what you’re putting into it.
The things we tell ourselves, over and over again. By anticipating – or perhaps acknowledging that you already have them – and changing them, you will be able to create the opportunities for success and fulfillment that so many others will miss.
Is this what you’re saying to yourself when it comes to meditation?
“I don’t have time for this.”
I fully understand, it can get quite hectic and busy out there. So, let’s just make a little list of where all this time goes to. How come there are so many people in the world who can find 2 hours per day to meditate? And no, they do not all live on a mountain top somewhere exotic. They have commitments, they have jobs but they make the time for it because they belief it works.
“I don’t know how.”
Go to a yoga class, visit a meditation teacher or book a retreat. Check Youtube for guided meditations. The information is everywhere. Go shopping till you find a teacher you like, and stick with him or her for a while. These days, with so many teachers around, you really have to do better than to say you don’t know how to get to the knowhow.
“I can’t do it. I just can’t get my mind to stop thinking.”
Lucky you! It means that you have a working mind, and it’s creative cause it’s active! Stopping the thoughts, stopping the mind from working is not something we are aiming for with meditation. You just want things to become a little bit more quiet, to get a little bit more grip on your thoughts.
“Meditation is selfish”.
It’s easy to imagine meditation as very self-focused. And it can be that way at times. But by taking care of your own mind, and treating it well, you’re more likely to treat others well. You’re developing skills like acceptance, patience, and empathy, which are qualities that will benefit the people you care about. So, actually, it’s all about others. So if you don’t feel motivated to meditate for yourself, remember that doing it could help those around you.
“Shouldn’t I be doing something ‘useful’ instead?”
What could be more useful than developing compassion and stepping far away from greed, hatred and delusion in this world right now? Meditation should not be on your to-do list. It isn’t just something to cross off your to-do list before rushing on to the next thing. It is the end, not a means to an end.
Set tiny little goals
When starting a daily meditation practice, many people feel pressure to try to meditate for long periods of time. ‘They’ say to meditate for at least 20 minutes per day, in the morning. I’m still not sure who ‘they’ are but this can set you up for failure if your skills don’t yet match up with your ambition.
Start small, just 6 to 10 minutes in the beginning, and don’t try too hard. Just sit with the rise and fall of the breath and allow all your crazy thoughts to pass by. That is it.
As you become more comfortable with the training of your attention on the breath, you can steadily increase your time spent meditating. Remember, there is no goal whatsoever. In time, you may want to ask for advice from mentors and teachers to guide you further.
Scale back when you need to
Some days, you have to travel, you don’t feel well or you just don’t have the energy. That happens! On those days, just to a tiny little session. Meditate in the plane, in the car (not when you’re the one driving…) and just bring in the mindfulness of the breath.
Whatever you do, it’s all good and perfect, just do something to keep your daily practise going.
Link your daily meditation to another activity
A brilliant tip!
Pick something you do every day – for example shower, drink coffee, or put your children to bed – and make a deal with yourself to meditate straight afterwards.
By attaching a new habit to an existing habit, daily meditation will become part of your daily routine a lot quicker and without any extra effort.
Go on a Retreat
The easiest way to start with a new habit is to actually start doing it every day. On most yoga retreats, you will start the day with meditation. Every day, you are guided into that quiet space. Building it up towards 6-12-24 minutes, experiencing different techniques for you to decide what feels best for you.
Vipassana is a 10 day silence and meditation retreat. An incredible experience and a boost for your meditation practice. Organized and run by the followers of Indian teacher S.N. Goenka around the world. You don’t need any prior meditation experience to go, just know that it can be very tough to sit for 10 days, and not talk.
All over the world, there’s silence, meditation and yoga holidays for you to get started with daily meditation. There are also many yoga schools and meditation centers that offer weekly sits. Meditation doesn’t have to be done alone, especially in the beginning, the support of a group may be very beneficial and, you make great new connections and grow with others. Having a teacher nearby who can guide you is also of great value.
Just know that by finding some quiet time, you can quiet your mind, which will help you refresh and feel ready to tackle new challenges!
Teaching yoga and meditation is what I adore and I get a kick out of coaching really cool people, the kind of people that come on my retreats 🙂 I enjoy life as much as possible and preach about life being too damn short to worry or be upset. When I’m not home in Essaouira, I might be hosting a retreat somewhere or I’m being very silent in some cave, on an island or at a meditation retreat.
I welcome any and all questions. You can contact me directly using the form on the Revealing Vajra website, or have a ‘social media go’ with the buttons here below.