Unable to meditate

Discussion in 'Meditation' started by Donna3939, Aug 30, 2010.

  1. Donna3939

    Donna3939
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    I am currently reading Ted Andrews' book "How To See and Read the Aura".

    In the book it says that a relaxing meditation will help to do this.

    The problem I suffer from is that I simply CAN'T meditate. Everytime I try to, I fall asleep, even though I keep willing myself not to.

    It could be in the middle of the day, when I have a few quiet minutes to myself (I have a 2 year old) - I would like to put it down to running around after my daughter but I was like this before I had her. I could fall asleep even if I had 10 hours sleep!

    I have numerous meditation cds but I fall asleep within minutes of starting.

    I know meditation is meant to help you relax, but not to point where I drift off all the time! Its especially frustrating when I am meditating before trying an exercise like what is written in the book. It means I fall asleep and don't even have the chance to try the exercise and I feel like I simply CAN'T progress myself.

    It would just be nice to complete just ONE meditation without falling asleep and say "YES! - I've done it!"

    Can anyone give me some advice on how to stay awake but relaxed during meditation.

    Donna. x
     
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  2. jnani

    jnani
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    Hi Donna
    You are frustrated because you think meditation should be done this way or that and if done properly it will help you achieve peace, love, joy enlightenment etc etc
    If you sleep then sleep it is perfectly ok. I spent years sleeping! It is all good. The answer is in your intensity to meditate not in your will!
    This desire that you have to meditate is grace at work and will take care of when and how you progress on your spiritual journey. You already are progressing if urge to meditate is ignited.
    Ask yourself this - who wants to meditate and who wants to get enlightened? It is ego who wants to meditate and get enlightened your true nature does not need any of this. The real you is perfectly at peace already. Just relax into your Self, sleep away if that is what wants to happen! Trust this desire. This desire to meditate sets off a process which will take you all the way HOME. so to speak(you are already HOME) that is all you need. Right teacher will appear to guide you when you are ready. It won't be long looking at your intensity.
    relax!
     
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  3. Kevin Bryden

    Kevin Bryden
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    I thought that meditation is a way of achieving mental stillness. The egoic mind want's anything but stillness, as i understand it. Power of Now etc?
     
  4. Tigerlily

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    Maybe you are already in the habit of meditating, but have no idea you're doing it. You don't have to be sitting or lying down with your eyes shut, you could be staring at a section of wallpaper without thinking or gazing into the flame of a candle. You could be doing some sort of repetetive task that involves little physical activity and zero mental activity. I rember seeing on tv a few years ago an old Chinese man meditating as he did some traditional calligraphy.

    Of course that doesn't help you with guided meditation... but perhaps it's not a problem simply falling asleep.

    I wish I was in the hait of meditating, but I lack the self discipline to take a few minutes out of my day to quieten my mind.

    But good luck, hope you find something that works for you.
     
  5. Energylz

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    Hi Donna,

    What type of meditation are you doing and what position are you sitting/lying in when you do it. Is your head supported or not?

    There are different techniques for meditation and some suit different people better than others.

    Whichever method, it is often better to meditate sitting in a chair such that your are upright, supporting your back if necessary for comfort, but ensuring your head is not supported. If you lie down to meditate or have your head supported, this is conducive to sleep and your body will naturally relax into the sleep state rather than allow you to focus on the meditation.

    Of course, finding the time and place to meditate is also important, and if necessary you should speak openly with your family to just say that you want 10-20 minutes of time for yourself; find a quite place in the house to meditate, ensure it's sufficiently lit but not with any bright light shining in the face, and ensure there's nothing to disturb you.

    All Love and Reiki Hugs
     
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  6. holisticbabe

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    someone once told me even a day dream is a form of meditation....... Ive no idea how thats meant to help u but Ive read this thread a few times and that always comes into my mind so I know Im meant to tell you it.


    paula
    xxx
     
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  7. Energylz

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    In a sense that's true Holisticbabe,

    Meditation is not a practice, but a state of mind. We do enter different states of mind at various points in our daily lives, and daydreaming is certainly a state of mind, although I would argue that it does not serve to bring the mind to stillness, which is one of the key points of a deep meditative state. There are, of course, other types of meditation such as guided meditations, following the breath etc. and these do not allow the mind to reach stillness, but do offer other benefits.

    All Love and Reiki Hugs
     
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  8. ava

    ava
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    Hi Donna

    I too had problems when I started meditation practice. I was so wound up that I couldn't sit still for any length of time. The way I got around it was to take it in stages. Initially I used headphones and listened to a guided meditation on my iPod in bed (under the covers) last thing before sleep, and first thing in the morning. Obviously I fell asleep. The next stage was to sit on the sofa covered with a duvet and listen to the the guided meditation. Surprisingly I then jumped several stages and went straight to a kneeling meditation stool - and also dropped the guided meditation MP3. And there I stayed first thing in the morning for 9 months.

    I'm offering my example so that perhaps you can think of ways to do it incrementally - so that you develop a practice which isn't conducive to sleep. I feel that Energyls advice resonates with me... it's the posture and the sitting position which is important for not falling asleep. If you associate being prostrate with sleep... then you'll fall asleep... hence avoid beds and comfy sofa chairs which support your head. I'd instead try a straight-back chair like a kitchen or dining room chair. Alternatively get a kneeling meditation stool (I have something almost exactly like this). For me it is easier to sit on that for an hour than in a chair.

    Good luck!

    Ava x
     
  9. Energylz

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    Blimey, that was a long meditation... :D

    All Love and Reiki Hugs
     
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  10. ava

    ava
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    Yeah, towards the end of the 9 months I was sitting in meditation for over an hour, quite happily. However in the first few months it was a only a couple of minutes. But always first thing in the morning. It was a lovely period of my life that I look back at fondly.

    Ava x
     
  11. pinkangel

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    Have you tried meditating out in nature Donna? Simply sit out in your garden to begin with for just 5 minutes. Focus on the sky or a flower, the bark of a tree or listen to the breeze through the trees. Many things connected with nature can calm and centre us.

    Give it time and be gentle with yourself. You'll get there.
     
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  12. ava

    ava
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    I wish that I had said this. IMO this is the best advice in this thread: just be patient. Looking back at how I started, I should have trusted that I'd find my own pace - which is why I think I was surprised that I 'jumped' several of my pre-planned stages. So, maybe I'd add to Pinkangel's excellent suggestion to be patient and gentle with yourself... by suggesting that you also trust yourself.

    Ava x
     
  13. alvinsmith

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    Hi Donna,

    Meditation is beneficial when it is done properly. But bear in mind that it is not easy to learn how to meditate properly. Overcoming your difficulties is one of the lessons you will learn on how to meditate properly. Do not get disheartened and keep persevering.
    No heavy meals before meditating. A light snack would be enough. Also, you can take a shower before meditating. Make sure you are wearing loose cotton clothes. The more comfortable you are, the easier it is for you to learn how to meditate properly.

    -Alvin
     
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    #13 alvinsmith, Oct 4, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 4, 2011
  14. Oggs

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    Am trying to Learn how to meditate but stilling my mind isn't easy. I don't switch off easily. Any tips?
     
  15. Tashanie

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    Practice and keep practicing - and don't expect too much of yourself to start with. Just aim for 5 minutes initially.

    I started with a guided meditation - you can buy them - or there are free ones available on line.
     
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  16. darrensurrey

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  17. Chakra Chick

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    Hi Donna,

    At the heart of even the simplest meditation is gently maintaining our focus on something - a sound, an image or a sensation for instance. When we daydream however (see Energylz' thoughts earlier), our mind is free roaming offroad in the dark. During meditation we lead it kindly down a softly-lit path of our choosing.

    GENTLY focusing is the key... Trying to hang on desperately to our focus is exhausting, and our mind will necessarily relieve us of the strain by allowing thoughts to slip in and distract us.

    So, try to enjoy simply being with something that pleases you for a couple of minutes daily to begin with - listening mindfully to music or the sounds of nature can be a lovely way to start.

    Falling asleep, being restless or having our minds wander are all normal. We all experience and enjoy meditation differently on each occasion. You will certainly gain some benefit from each practise, simply due to the fact you've made a conscious decision to treat yourself well and engage with meditation. It's all good.

    As you gradually manage to stay with your focus for increasing amounts of time your confidence in your relationship with meditation will grow, and you'll begin to notice the cumulative benefits of your practise.

    Be kind to yourself, go gently and enjoy....

    CC
    XX
     
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    #17 Chakra Chick, Aug 30, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2013
  18. apollenhealth

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    Hey Donna, an important factor in meditation is attaining a calm state of mind and body. This can happen with practice but certain essential oils can definitely help in calming the mind. Try using Jasmine essential oil which serves as a mood lifter; this makes it well suited for getting in the right frame of mind upon meditation. A whiff of jasmine will help you to feel revitalised and optimistic. Another essential oil that works great with Jasmine would be Bergamot, which is another uplifting oil. Mixing the two oils together can create an amazing recipe for meditation.

    On a side note, although essential oils can help one meditate better, it is but a tool. The critical ingredients to a successful meditation include proper breathing and having a positive frame of mind upon meditation. Having a personal mantra or focusing solely on one's breath can greatly help in clearing the mind of the clutter of everyday life. Another important ingredient is to make sure you are in a comfortable meditating position. Its important to note there is no one correct stance/position for meditation. The key is to find what stance you find most comfortable and work with that.

    Hope you find this useful! :)
     

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