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Where Meditation Goes Wrong

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

Hi, welcome back to your Daily Mindfulness. In today's session, we're going to talk about how nothing can get in the way of meditation. So one of the biggest hiccups I see people get into with meditation is this subconscious perspective that there's something getting in the way of their practice. Things like sounds, an itch, the body not feeling okay. These things tend to naturally arise while we're meditating, but then the mind can quickly think these things are getting in the way of my practice.

Think about a cat crawling up to you while you're trying to meditate, or intrusive thoughts when you thought you were going to be peaceful, or even sounds that you hear in the background. The kids playing, a truck outside. All of which might seem agitating. And the reason this can be a dangerous relationship to take to our practice is because it can actually further separate us from our experience. They can further fracture us.

And at the heart of meditation, what we're cultivating is a mind that can be with the changing landscape of our life. The thoughts that are arising, emotions that are there, the sensations, and yes, all of the sensory experiences. If the peace that we get from our meditation practice is just contingent upon the moment being perfectly manufactured to our liking, well, that's not much of a practice and you're not developing anything that's really going to offer a sustainable happiness in the world. Because as soon as you go back into the world, Things are going to change. And so meditation really meets our life very honestly.

It acknowledges that things are going to happen randomly unexpectedly, even when you're trying to meditate. And the only way we're going to find some semblance of peace is to learn to be with that impermanence, that changing landscape of our life. So one thing you can do to work with this is at the beginning of your practice, just check to see, is there anything that's arising that you perceive to be getting in the way of your meditation? Something you're trying to skirt around, something you feel like is a hindrance or is intrusive. This isn't to say that you need to create the conditions of chaos for yourself. It is nice to find a place that's quiet and it's nice if there isn't a lot of agitation, that can be helpful for our practice.

So we do everything we can beforehand to maybe set that up. But as soon as we get into practice, if we're fending off these things, or if something does start to arise and it feels like, okay, this is getting in the way, that's a moment where that becomes your practice. And you've heard me say this phrase before, but in those moments you can say, you're welcome here too. Relax into it. Notice the tension that's arising in your body.

Invite the jaw to soften, the shoulders, the belly. And then just say, you're welcome here too. And practice connecting to that part of you that is spacious enough to hold this experience and reframe it as, not something that's getting in the way of your practice, but your practice itself. This is what you're working on. Anyone can be calm and peaceful when things are easy, when the moment is going exactly how they want it to go.

These are the moments that we're training, we're training for, and we get to train in. So when you find your mind taking that oppositional relationship to what's here, you just say, you're welcome here too. At least given it a moment of acknowledgement, softness, relaxing into it, and then you can redirect your attention back to whatever it is that you're focusing on. Thank you for your practice. Let's settle in for today's meditation.

Cory Muscara

4.8

Where Meditation Goes Wrong

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.

Hi, welcome back to your Daily Mindfulness. In today's session, we're going to talk about how nothing can get in the way of meditation. So one of the biggest hiccups I see people get into with meditation is this subconscious perspective that there's something getting in the way of their practice. Things like sounds, an itch, the body not feeling okay. These things tend to naturally arise while we're meditating, but then the mind can quickly think these things are getting in the way of my practice.

Think about a cat crawling up to you while you're trying to meditate, or intrusive thoughts when you thought you were going to be peaceful, or even sounds that you hear in the background. The kids playing, a truck outside. All of which might seem agitating. And the reason this can be a dangerous relationship to take to our practice is because it can actually further separate us from our experience. They can further fracture us.

And at the heart of meditation, what we're cultivating is a mind that can be with the changing landscape of our life. The thoughts that are arising, emotions that are there, the sensations, and yes, all of the sensory experiences. If the peace that we get from our meditation practice is just contingent upon the moment being perfectly manufactured to our liking, well, that's not much of a practice and you're not developing anything that's really going to offer a sustainable happiness in the world. Because as soon as you go back into the world, Things are going to change. And so meditation really meets our life very honestly.

It acknowledges that things are going to happen randomly unexpectedly, even when you're trying to meditate. And the only way we're going to find some semblance of peace is to learn to be with that impermanence, that changing landscape of our life. So one thing you can do to work with this is at the beginning of your practice, just check to see, is there anything that's arising that you perceive to be getting in the way of your meditation? Something you're trying to skirt around, something you feel like is a hindrance or is intrusive. This isn't to say that you need to create the conditions of chaos for yourself. It is nice to find a place that's quiet and it's nice if there isn't a lot of agitation, that can be helpful for our practice.

So we do everything we can beforehand to maybe set that up. But as soon as we get into practice, if we're fending off these things, or if something does start to arise and it feels like, okay, this is getting in the way, that's a moment where that becomes your practice. And you've heard me say this phrase before, but in those moments you can say, you're welcome here too. Relax into it. Notice the tension that's arising in your body.

Invite the jaw to soften, the shoulders, the belly. And then just say, you're welcome here too. And practice connecting to that part of you that is spacious enough to hold this experience and reframe it as, not something that's getting in the way of your practice, but your practice itself. This is what you're working on. Anyone can be calm and peaceful when things are easy, when the moment is going exactly how they want it to go.

These are the moments that we're training, we're training for, and we get to train in. So when you find your mind taking that oppositional relationship to what's here, you just say, you're welcome here too. At least given it a moment of acknowledgement, softness, relaxing into it, and then you can redirect your attention back to whatever it is that you're focusing on. Thank you for your practice. Let's settle in for today's meditation.

Cory Muscara

4.8

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