A lot of people (myself formerly included) get turned off by the thought of meditation because they think they are doing it wrong when they can’t seem to sit still and quiet their minds – or are too impatient when the results aren’t immediate. They give up before seeing the immense benefits of setting time aside to connect with themselves.
The goal with meditation isn’t to completely stop the mind from formulating thoughts. We can’t control the mind. Instead, the goal is to become acquainted with the inner workings of our mind in order to train it to work in our favour. When we start to look at the way we think, we are able to separate ourselves from our thoughts and find freedom in our newfound self awareness. Give yourself enough time and you can start to choose which thoughts to give your attention to, ridding yourself of old stress, fear and anxiety triggers.
When we can’t separate ourselves from our thoughts we believe that we are our thoughts and our thoughts often stem from the conditioned stories we’ve told ourselves since childhood. Our mind in turn is too cluttered to be able to tell the difference or change the story.
Find stillness amidst the chaos. Peace resides within you. When you slow down and quiet the clatter in your mind, you allow yourself the opportunity to mindfully choose the right thoughts to focus on. Those thoughts create your perception of reality, so give yourself the opportunity to choose wisely.
You may think nothing is happening at first but you are training your mind to become an ally. Like learning anything new, this takes time and patience. Go into it without expectations. You won’t teach your mind to stop thinking, but you can definitely learn to ride its waves.