When you’re new to a meditation practice, even the simplest of things can deter you.
Here are 7 answers to questions or concerns that may have crossed your mind.
1. What happens if I must sneeze or itch?
Sneezing and itching are natural. Just do it and then bring yourself back to the meditation by focusing on your breathing. If you are constantly wanting to itch or fidget, this might be a sign that you need to use a bit of focus over the distraction. Try and breathe into the area that is wanting to move. Try not to become frustrated with yourself. Just gently breathe. If it continues, try again at another time.
2. I think I might be someone who CAN’T meditate. If you’ve even considered this thought, then you have already created a foundation to meditate. Just by breathing, you have the basis to meditate, since breathing is the foundation of meditation. But the key is to use the breath as your ANCHOR to keep you in the meditation state. It is a constant source to assist you.
3. What if I get distracted easily when I try to meditate?
First identify if you are in an area that has too many distracting items, sounds or activity. If so, remove yourself from this environment, then actively create the kind of space you need for a little quiet time. It may mean you tell the people close to you that you’ll be ‘out of action’ for a little while. As mentioned in the point above, use the breath as your anchor when any distraction tries to take your focus away.
4. Should I attend a group meditation class or practise by myself? Both are great! A group meditation class is a great way to stay focused. Instead of you having to be diligent with creating a meditation, you just follow the guidance of the teacher. There is a bonus to a group meditation class – the energy is amazing! But, if you would like to follow your own timing and type of meditation, then going it alone will work for you. Whatever you feel comfortable with is the best.
5. Should my eyes be closed or open? There are no rules to this. Both can work well. However, if you are finding it a challenge to stay focused, then closing your eyes might work well. If you do want to keep them open, then finding a point directly in front of you towards the ground is a good starting point. Soften your eyes, then breathe slowly keeping this soft gaze on the one spot.
6. What if there are things in my life worrying me and I’m concerned that I will be distracted?Worrying and thinking are natural. But if you want to meditate without these distractions, then writing them down before meditation can help. Once you have written them down, you know that you won’t forget them. They will still be there to attend to at the end of the meditation. You will probably be in a better frame of mind to deal with them after meditating.
7. I can’t relax or sit still if I try to meditate.Sometimes body temperatures fluctuate, and some people may become hot or cold during meditation. Wearing layers or having a heat pack or blanket nearby can help to relax you. You could try putting on a timer for 5 minutes. In your mind you know that isn’t long, so you are likely relax knowing that it is for a short time.
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