WHY IS MEDITATION SO HARD?

WHY IS MEDITATION SO HARD?

If you’re reading this blog, chances are you’ve already tried meditating and just ‘couldn’t get it’.

For whatever reason, meditation just seemed to be out of your reach, and not something you can do.

woman beach
woman beach

Firstly, let us just say that if you want to meditate, you definitely can do it. And we’d argue it’s a skill worth learning.

But, there’s a caveat: meditation is not easy. It takes work and practice to build the skills.

Admittedly that’s not the case for everyone, some people just seem to take to meditation like a duck to water. But rest assured that is not the case for most people, so if you find yourself getting frustrated when you try to meditate, please don’t think you’re incapable, or doing it wrong. You’re not, and you’re definitely not alone in your frustrations.

Why Many People Find Meditation Tricky

The simple fact is that the human brain is a very, very busy little organ. Its primary job is to keep you safe and alive, and that means being alert at all times and paying attention to a million things at once. As a result, focusing on only one thing at a time, as you typically do in meditation, is an extremely tough ask.

But it’s also why meditation is so valuable to our wellbeing, especially in terms of reducing stress levels. Because the brain is working so hard all the time, we don’t tend to process things in the most efficient way. For some of us, this means we simply don’t take in information, and perhaps forget to do important things as a result.

We also get caught in mental traps and habits, and we end up massively overthinking things. If you’ve ever found yourself replaying a conversation in your head over and over again, then you know how exhausting and anxiety inducing it is when you can’t let go of worries.

All of this is a very tiring process for the brain, and the body, and we end up feeling anxious and stressed, even when there’s no immediate reason to be.

The power of meditation is that it helps create some much needed peace and quiet in our minds, and encourages us to focus on something other than our recurring worries. And while it’s definitely not easy, it can be extremely beneficial.

How to Make Meditation Easier

The trick, as with most things, is to start small. Don’t aim for hour long sessions straight away. Start wherever and however you can. If that’s just seeing if you can count to ten in your mind without being distracted, then do that, or count ten breaths, or look for ten red things. And if you do get distracted, be gentle with yourself and just try again. If you can, try and make a mental note of what distracted you, and how you felt when the interrupting thought popped up.

Remember that meditation is a practice, and that means that it takes practice. The good news is that it doesn’t take much to progress. Even a minute a day can be enough to see major results over time.

The other thing to know is that you can do it your way – and definitely should. Because meditation is hard, especially to start with, it’s so important to find a way to do it that works for you. And you can do almost anything as a form of meditation – walking, eating, chores, working – the list really is endless. Some people find guided meditations useful, particularly when starting out, as it gives you something to focus on. Others prefer a silent environment where they can just listen to their thoughts. Many people do both!

So forget what you think you know about meditation, and go off and do it your way.  Maybe you’ll find it’s not (quite) so hard when you find what works for you.

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