Breathing. Not Sleeping.

I am still struggling in my mindfulness journey. I found a few online resources to support me in going forward. I am visualizing “training my mind” as similar to the process of training your body. When you start running or working out, you can hit a wall and see very little progress for a time.

My two biggest struggles with meditation recently are restlessness and a very busy brain. A few websites that offered support:

Meditation Oasis

The Change Blog: “meditation isn’t supposed to be easy” – thanks for these words!!!

Mindful: which tells of Eastern teachings describing the mind as “a drunken monkey bitten by a scorpion”

Even the Headspace app reminds me that there are obstacles to successful meditation. A recent session began with a focus on the fact that training the brain is a skill, and like any skill it requires practice. It is ok for it to be difficult sometimes. At this point I am told that even resisting all of these distracting thoughts will only add more tension to my mind, so my only job is to be aware of the distractions. When my mind wanders, I only need to gently return my focus to the moment.

Some Wins:

  • I’m still meditating every day
  • A weird new observation happened when I had a headache last week. I have had regular headaches for a few years: often 2-3 times a week, and a migraine or two each month. I realized that this headache was the first headache I’ve had since I started meditating in over a month! Interesting. I intend to do some research to see if there is a correlation between meditation and fewer headaches.

I reconnected with some of my previous learning in my meditation journal: we are our most authentic selves in the spaces between our breaths, the spaces between our thoughts. So, even if those pauses are short, each one counts.

The Headspace app directs you to do a body scan every time. I am asked to become aware of the areas of tension in my body, not do anything about it, but just be aware. My tense areas remain the IMG_0248same. I carry tension in my forehead, along my jawline, my lips (I bite them constantly), from my neck down through my back, both shoulders, my right rotator cuff, my core is always tight, and I keep my toes curled up when I am stressed. Thinking about these areas of tension has given me another goal: I hope that meditation helps me to reduce the tension in my mind, hopefully leading to less tension in my body.

I pictured a bizarre version of the old “Operation” game, with the tweezers, red nose and grating buzzer noise! I had to sketch the creepy visual.

I’m hoping that daily meditation will heal these areas – with no buzzers to disrupt my focus.





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