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Meditation Is Not About "Feeling Good"

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hey, welcome back to your Daily Mindfulness. Today, we're going to talk about why meditation is not about feeling good. This can be a tough one to hear because we often come into the meditation practice looking for relief from stress, or simply because we want to feel better and optimize our life. So doesn't it make sense that meditation will be about feeling good? On the one hand, yes. We're doing this practice to reduce suffering and cultivate greater wellbeing.

There's no doubt about that and that is the intention and one of the promises of mindfulness meditation. But there's an interesting paradox here, which is that in order to get to some of those deeper, more enjoyable states of wellbeing through our meditation, we need to actually let go of trying to get to those enjoyable states because they're not coming from momentary experience. They're coming from moving fluidly with the full range of our experience. This also means we need to stop evaluating our practice based on how we're feeling in the moment. There are a lot of different things that can come up in a meditation practice.

You may feel peaceful or sleepy. You may feel energized, bored, confused, or even agitated and stressed. All of these experiences are normal and can arise for a number of different reasons, depending on what's going on in your life, what's happened in your past, how you were paying attention in the meditation and so on. Meditation is not about feeling good in the moment. It's about what experience arises and how you relate to those experiences.

I've had meditations where I felt like I was floating on a cloud and other meditations where I felt restlessness, pain and frustration. One was not better than the other, although one certainly felt better than the other. Both were opportunities to practice being with the never ending flow of different experiences. Not attaching too strongly to the ones I wanted, not pushing away the ones I didn't want. But instead finding a new kind of peace that wasn't dependent on the moment being perfectly manufactured to my liking.

This is a powerful kind of happiness that can only come from not being attached to happiness. So as you continue on your meditation journey, and as you continue to bring mindfulness in your life, see if you can assess your practice less on how your moments feel and more on how you're relating to them with awareness and presence. It doesn't mean you can't enjoy a pleasurable moment when it's there, by all means savor it. But just keep in mind that our deeper well-being comes from all of these experiences arising, passing and us moving fluidly with the full range of them. The more you do this, the more you get to experience an even deeper happiness.

I'll talk to you in the meditation. As always, thank you for your practice and take care.

Cory Muscara

4.7

Meditation Is Not About "Feeling Good"

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Duration

Your default time is based on your progress and is changed automatically as you practice.

Hey, welcome back to your Daily Mindfulness. Today, we're going to talk about why meditation is not about feeling good. This can be a tough one to hear because we often come into the meditation practice looking for relief from stress, or simply because we want to feel better and optimize our life. So doesn't it make sense that meditation will be about feeling good? On the one hand, yes. We're doing this practice to reduce suffering and cultivate greater wellbeing.

There's no doubt about that and that is the intention and one of the promises of mindfulness meditation. But there's an interesting paradox here, which is that in order to get to some of those deeper, more enjoyable states of wellbeing through our meditation, we need to actually let go of trying to get to those enjoyable states because they're not coming from momentary experience. They're coming from moving fluidly with the full range of our experience. This also means we need to stop evaluating our practice based on how we're feeling in the moment. There are a lot of different things that can come up in a meditation practice.

You may feel peaceful or sleepy. You may feel energized, bored, confused, or even agitated and stressed. All of these experiences are normal and can arise for a number of different reasons, depending on what's going on in your life, what's happened in your past, how you were paying attention in the meditation and so on. Meditation is not about feeling good in the moment. It's about what experience arises and how you relate to those experiences.

I've had meditations where I felt like I was floating on a cloud and other meditations where I felt restlessness, pain and frustration. One was not better than the other, although one certainly felt better than the other. Both were opportunities to practice being with the never ending flow of different experiences. Not attaching too strongly to the ones I wanted, not pushing away the ones I didn't want. But instead finding a new kind of peace that wasn't dependent on the moment being perfectly manufactured to my liking.

This is a powerful kind of happiness that can only come from not being attached to happiness. So as you continue on your meditation journey, and as you continue to bring mindfulness in your life, see if you can assess your practice less on how your moments feel and more on how you're relating to them with awareness and presence. It doesn't mean you can't enjoy a pleasurable moment when it's there, by all means savor it. But just keep in mind that our deeper well-being comes from all of these experiences arising, passing and us moving fluidly with the full range of them. The more you do this, the more you get to experience an even deeper happiness.

I'll talk to you in the meditation. As always, thank you for your practice and take care.

Cory Muscara

4.7

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