Hush.

Quieting the mind.

It’s kind of an impossible task, stopping the incessant chatter.

Instead, listening. Observing. Noticing without judging. Seeing without computing an opinion. Watching without engaging.

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It’s such a simple concept. But I can’t deny that it’s difficult as all hell to put into practice. I swear I have a three-year-old in my brain who’s just learned to talk who yacks away in my head 24/7. It is very difficult to shut it up. I desperately need some peace.

I’ve written about my meditation attempts here before. Meditating is something I have been continuing to try to work into my daily life over the last few months, but it’s absolutely not something I have mastered yet.

I’ve been reading about it a lot lately, looking up podcasts and YouTube videos, and – get this – sitting down and trying to meditate.

I take a deep breath, and spend about 2 seconds focusing on not focusing. And it doesn’t work. All I can hear in my head is “no, stop! Stop thinking! Okay don’t say “stop thinking” because that counts as thinking. And stop humming rap songs, loser.”

I feed like I need guidance. But I’m given up when it comes to figuring out where to find it.

There is a Buddhist temple in my city with a sign that invites everyone to come meditate – but as you can imagine, I cannot bring myself to even seriously consider attending. My Ego tells me that I’d be judged and not be welcome there. I picture myself sitting there, doing it wrong somehow, watching others for cues but giving myself away, and people watching me back – wondering why a girl like me thought she had any right to intrude into their sacred place.

I know it’s not true. Not being welcome at a place of worship is unfathomable. But Mr. Ego has a very loud voice, and it’s even more difficult to ignore when I’m attempting to find quiet. It would add a layer of difficulty to an already difficult endeavour. It’s off the table for me.

I’m still looking for ways to meditate, though. I try to spend some time every day…

—Ugh. That’s a total lie. Lately I’ve only been doing it a couple of times a week. Meditating is really hard, and I don’t enjoy it. I’m just so bad at it!

I say this with a smile on my face. Meditation is practically (actually?) an industry nowadays because it’s so hard to conquer. And, we live in a world where we want clear instructions and a clear outcome. Really, just think about it. We want everything to happen so quickly, and our society has created the fastest ways to be rich, beautiful, and smart. The lottery. Liposuction. Wikipedia. Why hasn’t anyone figured out a way to instantly meditate?

Here are the steps to meditating:

Step 1: Don’t think.

Don’t we live in the most amazing age where anything is possible? The hundreds of thousands of webpages, books, recordings, TV shows, podcasts, and classes dedicated to teaching meditation must have figured out a simple way to actually meditate successfully for more than my 2-3 second average.

Why hasn’t anyone figured out foolproof steps to actually stop the mind from thinking!? A tried and true patented manual? A scientific method? Some kind of meditation life hack?

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Well fuck.

 

If a psychiatrist suggested that I plug my brain into a meditation machine, I would do it. In a heartbeat. I would buy it off Amazon, and I’d buy stocks in the company.

For now, I’m just going to continue to try and focus on my breath, the ticking of a clock, or the sounds of babbling brooks or mating whales on my phone. Actively tell myself to hush when it gets too loud in there.

But in the meantime, if anyone has a succinct get-enlighted-quick guide they’ve been hiding?

Gimme! I will give you all of my dollars (which, for the record, is zero dollars. Sorry).

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17 thoughts on “Hush.”

  1. I feel this so, so much! I too have trouble focussing on not focusing, and find the idea of meditating a bit daunting actually, especially when my thoughts are running a million miles a minute! A couple of things that have been helping me though, slowly and surely, is guided meditation, because it tells you, step by step, what to do and focus on, which is far easier than being left to your own devices. Another thing that sometimes can help is imagining catching and tagging all you fleeting thoughts, and just keep drawing back to meditation each time. Lastly, like anything else, meditation is a skill and the more we practice, the better we will become at it over time. Good luck with your practice! It’s a tough one for sure 💛

    Liked by 1 person

  2. 3 things: really, did you try this one? also- go to Youtube and search under Mindfulness. See, it has to be someone else’s voice guiding you, not your voice. Your voice will just resume the chatter so it doesn’t work. Then practice practice practice- There is also a great Ap called Simple Habit that gives you a 5-7 min meditation practice that has their guide and a visual of a slow moving circle on your screen – works great

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Now, I have a Masters in health and neuropsychology, and I wish my peers had done the research and made a meditation machine. And I’d be lying if I were to say “I can absolutely focus and meditate”. When it gets too loud in there for me, I love to dance.. Meditation is not my thing (yet!). Good luck with your practice!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love the idea of dancing actually!! I feel like there are many forms of meditation, like I think listening to music is sort of a meditative practice. Reading, too. Anything that kind of stops your typical thought process and turns it into something positive sounds pretty good!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I want to tell you something one of my meditation guides said in a class one day; he said, “It is impossible to turn off your mind and your thoughts.” What? I thought the whole point of meditation was to stop thinking and just be. I have to say I felt so much better after he told me this; he said there is no such thing as meditating wrong; whatever your experience is, it is right because it is yours. Ok, I am sounding all floaty and spiritual right now, but realizing this truth about mediation really set me free. I went to a meditation center for a while, but I don’t always do the whole out in public thing very well, so I found an app called Insight Timer; it has thousands of guided meditations and one of my favorite teachers from the center actually has a few meditations on there that I highly recommend (her name is Hilary Jackendoff and she teaches Yoga Nidra). Give it a try and see what happens; and remember, you really can’t do it wrong.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I can’t wait for you to read it! I am so happy to be the first to highlight you with an award. I can’t believe that no one else has ❤ This is my way of sharing with our community that you are an amazing writer and to thank you for being a supporter of my blog. Enjoy darling ❤

        Liked by 1 person

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