Myths of Meditation

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7 MYTHS OF MEDITATION

Let’s be honest, there are a slew of reasons we don’t start meditating. I’m going to do you a big favor right now and squash some of these myths. Get ready because you’re going to lose some serious excuse makers here!

1. I have to sit perfectly still in the Lotus position in order to do it “right”.
Wrong! It’s true that some forms of mediation call for specific positions, but that doesn’t mean they all do. The real goal of mediation is to make sure you’re in a comfortable position but that you don’t fall asleep (unless that’s the goal of your mediation. Then by all means, lie down and get cozy). If you can safely lie down during meditation without falling asleep then have at it.

Sitting, standing, walking and lying down are all acceptable positions depending on the type of mediation you’re practicing. It’s perfectly fine to move around if you need to. You can adjust, change positions and scratch. Just make sure to settle back in once you’re done.

There are also awesome pillows, seats and benches made just for meditation that can make it much for comfortable for you.

2. You must clear your mind of all thought.
Nope. Another false assumption. I’ll give you one guess as to why…. It’s impossible! As human beings living in this physical world, we have responsibilities, worries and dreams. Our minds will spin a story about a situation that we’re only imagining or have arguments with people about things that we haven’t even talk to them about. Simply put, our minds are going all the time and it’s unreasonable to think that sitting down, closing our eyes and breathing will immediately settle the constant chatter in our heads.

The good news is that meditation is a way to tame our thoughts. Instead of our thoughts being our master, we can become the master of our thoughts. This can and does greatly reduce stress, anxiety and worry.

2. You must clear your mind of all thought.
Nope. Another false assumption. I’ll give you one guess as to why…. It’s impossible! As human beings living in this physical world, we have responsibilities, worries and dreams. Our minds will spin a story about a situation that we’re only imagining or have arguments with people about things that we haven’t even talk to them about. Simply put, our minds are going all the time and it’s unreasonable to think that sitting down, closing our eyes and breathing will immediately settle the constant chatter in our heads.

The good news is that meditation is a way to tame our thoughts. Instead of our thoughts being our master,
we can become the master of our thoughts. This can and does greatly reduce stress, anxiety and worry.

3. I don’t have time to meditate.
Can you spare 5 minutes? If you just said no then you’re in serious denial. I spend 5 minutes just deciding if I’m going to snooze for another 10 more minutes.

Seriously, you can do a simple mediation in 5 minutes that will start you on the right foot in the morning or stop you from killing your co-worker in the middle of the day. Once you realize how helpful a 5 minute meditation can be, you might decide to increase it to 10 or 20 minutes per day.

ust the thought of having to do 20 minutes of meditation was enough to talk myself out of it. No pressure… let’s start with 5 and see how that goes. The last thing you want to do is commit yourself to doing more than you know you can which will immediately give you an excuse to not even start. Start small and build up.

4. Meditation is some weird new age or religious practice.
There are as many reasons for practicing meditation as there are forms of mediation. It’s true that meditation goes back thousands of years and is written about in many old spiritual texts and that should be encouraging. Modern science is finding some pretty good reasons to meditate other than spiritual connection.

Some of these include:
Lowering blood pressure
Lowering Anxiety
Reducing Depression
Memory Booster
Builds up immune system
To name a few…

From athletes using meditation to help them push through mental obstacles to medical doctors recognizing meditation’s ability to help control pain, this practice is being used for diverse situations around the world. This is sure to be just the beginning.

5. Feeling the benefits of mediation takes years.
This is probably one of the biggest obstacles that hold us back. We live in an “on demand” world of instant gratification so it’s only logical for us to want to experience the benefits NOW! We don’t have the time to invest in something that may take months or years.

Practicing meditation regularly will help change actual brain patterns to make positive changes in your life from emotional well-being to physical health but even the first couple of times you meditate you will see profound differences in sleep patterns, pain levels, depression and anxiety. You will feel more of a sense of control over many emotional and health challenges.

6. Only adults benefit from meditation.
While adults get great benefits from meditation, kids can gain so much from starting to mediate early in life. If you think about it, grown-ups have a ton of programming and belief systems built up around the idea of meditation. Kids don’t care either way. In today’s world every kid seems to have a label. There are whole industries popping up to take care of them not to mention the slew of pharmaceuticals created to bring them up, calm them down or help them focus. Meditation is a simple tool to help kids take control over their inner world and how they interact with the outside world.

What better technique to have to help them deal with their own emotional or physical state than a way to reconnect with their core and work through it themselves. You are giving them back their power and not relying on everything outside of them to change their reactions.

Mediation gives kids a way to focus on the now and increase their awareness. It’s in direct opposition to the hours of screen time kids have every day. Mediation helps kids foster compassion, imagination and self-esteem. It truly is necessary for this generation in today’s world.

7. Meditation is boring.
Quite the opposite. With so many different types of mediation, there is definitely one that will resonate with you. That being said, don’t rule out types of mediation that you consider hard or boring. While I did find certain types of mediation excruciating in the beginning, I also found that by practicing them in their rawest form I saw glimpses of myself that were deeply hidden and I wouldn’t have seen otherwise. I found these were the forms of meditation that stretched and challenged me the most and that I ended up most grateful for.

I will encourage you to go into mediation without expectations. Once you drop expectations, you open yourself up to the vast amount of experiences that await you. By setting your expectations, you are drawing a line in the sand of what you are willing to experience. Moving beyond that can be challenging but once you get the hang of it, what awaits you is truly magical.