Haven't actually tried it yet but have been trying to label thoughts as that (just passing thoughts) and to be somewhat more attentive. I am finding...wow, my brain is loud. Right now my parents are about to close on my apartment (the privilege, I know) and I'm hunting around on craigslist for furniture, picking it up and lugging it around town, thinking about the timing of when I move everything from my sublet into the new place, yada yada yada...just going, going, going on about these kind of stupid logistics.
Right now I'm trying mostly to just see somewhat from the outside, 'okay, I am reacting in stress, I am in overdrive because of anxiety, the anxiety is fabricated' as I notice my legs start to jitter or as I start to comb through my hair obsessively. It's so strange to notice those nervous tics!
I guess I'm wondering...did others here try meditation? Do you find that when you pay attention to it your brain is a scarily silly little rodent running around on a wheel about different things? It's weird!
[This message edited by norabird at 10:27 AM, August 6th (Wednesday)]
I have read Pema and I am reading her again. still. whatever. I use that technique of labeling thoughts and letting them go when I am feeling overwhelmed. It's a major shift, and one I'm not terribly good at yet, but I am starting to see the benefit of it in a more peaceful mind and body even when the winds are buffeting me, as they have been lately.
Congrats on the apartment!
"Keep your face always toward the sunshine - and shadows will fall behind you."
Don't worry about the lack of views/likes. It is a recently combined version of two previously uploaded very popular videos.
Hope some on here may find it of use.
I can't sit still for that long, I get bored, or ansty. I've tried it, but it's insanely difficult for me.
Hats off to anyone who can.
IIRC - In Pema's book "When Things Fall Apart" , there is a lot of talk about meditation throughout the entire text, but there's a small section in the beginning that goes over an experience that has been very helpful for me.
For people whose thought processes are very, um, excitable and scattered *raises hand*, it is hard to quiet the mind. Something that makes it even MORE difficult is when we give ourselves a hard time for not being able to quell the thoughts that trickle in. Learning gentleness with oneself is a critical first step in meditation. That is, you need to be ok with not doing it perfectly, or even close to correctly for a while.
This class was taught to gently acknowledge when thoughts were drifting in, and just label it as "Thinking" and gently usher them back outside the door. Using the word "thinking" when our mind starts to cloud is non judgemental and just descriptive, and it has been an amazing touchstone for me to remind myself to take a breath and let it all flow back out.
I am not a good meditator, but that's ok. Thanks to Pema, I can grab some quiet in my mind when I need to, and getting that breathing regulated and letting some calm waft in is priceless.
It's odd, reading 'When Things Fall Apart' I can get a sense in my own brain of that 'ego-less' spot under the thoughts. I can also tell when I try to let the thoughts go or halt them that the ego--the thing that feels like 'me', the running commentary covering up every moment--freaks out. Like, what IS that space that isn't constantly projecting into an imagined future? And then my ego fights opening up into it.
I like how she talks about making ourselves tender and I also have been trying for a while to let my opinions be just that, not facts, so I think it would pay off if I could manage it...but I guess the whole point is that no one's brain wants to shut off the noise and that it's a constant process!
...but I guess the whole point is that no one's brain wants to shut off the noise and that it's a constant process!
For me, it's more like my brain isn't used to shutting off the noise. It knows analysis and panic so well that it has worn grooves. There is security in operating the same way over and over, even if it's unhealthy.
When I can get even just a couple fleeting moments of the quiet and calm, it's like a massage for my brain. It's like putting down weights that you've gotten so used to carrying that your hands are molded around the beam and feel awkward when empty. The more you practice, the more you will get used to it.
It's normal to experience anxiety about meditation, especially if anxiety is your protective response. For some it's flight, for others it's panic. I think the people in the panic bucket panic about panicking, and it becomes this whirling catch-22.
Do the breathing exercises and try to focus on your breath. Give yourself SOMETHING to think about, and then you won't worry so much about falling if you let go.
[This message edited by Jrazz at 2:08 PM, August 6th (Wednesday)]
It's dropped off lately, but I live a short walk away from an amazing pebble beach.
When the tide is right, the waves crash in and make a breathing sound as the pebbles get sucked back into the surf.
I can perch on a log and just tune into that sound for a long time, and just breathe and close my eyes and enjoy the sun on my face.
It energizes and calms me all at the same time.