If You Expect Meditation to Calm You Down, It’s No Wonder You’re Stressed Out

If Meditation is Boring, You’re Doing it Wrong

Meditation is not difficult.

Why do you even want to meditate? That’s what you should be asking yourself.

If you don’t enjoy meditation, then yeah, it’s going to seem difficult. Anything that is sufficiently painful is going to feel difficult if you force yourself to do it for long enough, including meditation.

What are you hoping to get out of meditation? If you’re hoping to get peace, relaxation, tranquility, and calm, then you’re probably going to be frustrated.

Even if you get those things occasionally, they’re not going to be there all the time. When they are, meditation will feel easy. When they’re not, it will feel difficult. And you’ll stop doing it.

Are you trying to meditate because you have some big problem in your life you need to fix? Anxiety, depression, relationship problems, weight problems, addictions? Meditation might help with those, and it might not. It might even make them worse at times.

Am I trying to talk you out of meditating? Nope. I think you should meditate. But I also think you should have reasonable expectations for what’s involved.

Are you a high-achiever? If so, you’ll probably get frustrated with meditation.

Meditation isn’t one of those things you can master in a few weeks, take pictures of your progress, and post on Instagram. Sure, you could take pictures, but who’s going to see the progress? It’s all inside you.

All inside you. Nowhere else.

Where else would it be? Come on, think about it. Use your brain.

Meditation is the key to your happiness. You know this. That’s why you want to be able to do it.

Why You Can’t Meditate

Unfortunately, the biggest obstacle to your happiness is YOU.

YOU are screwing it all up. Sorry not sorry if that offends you.

YOU are demanding, high-maintenance, and perfectionistic. You have impossibly high standards for yourself (and for others).

So, if you want to meditate, you’re going to need to find some way of working around YOU. Because YOU certainly aren’t going to step aside and make this easy for yourself.

You can’t just tell yourself to get lost. It doesn’t work that way. You know better. You’re just going to argue and justify and rationalize.

You have to launch a sneak attack of some kind.

Here’s what I suggest: accept yourself. Radically.

Stop fighting with yourself. Just allow yourself to do whatever it is that you are doing. Trust that whatever you’re doing is something you’re doing for a good reason. Yeah, maybe it’s not going to work, but at least you’re doing it for a reason.

You can meditate no matter what. Even if you’re not making progress, even if you have nothing to show for it. You can still do it. You can still waste that time.

Either meditation is good or it isn’t. Which is it? If you’re trying to meditate, I assume there’s at least a part of you that believes it would be good for you.

So, commit to it. Not forever. Just for a little bit. 20 minutes. Whatever.

Just do it.

See what happens.

Meditation is Boring, and That’s Why You Should Do It

When you “waste” your time meditating, it feels bad, right? It feels boring, pointless, stupid, and you get impatient, right?

Good, that’s how it should be. Try to enjoy those feelings. They’re there for a reason.

I have no idea why you feel those things. I could guess, but it’s none of my business. It’s your business. Literally, this is your business, that you have been engaged in for years. Get out of your way. Let yourself get on with your business.

How to Meditate Without Hating Yourself

Radical acceptance.

This is what makes meditation work. It’s what makes meditation doable.

If you don’t have radical acceptance, you will be struggling to meditate. It won’t be fun, you won’t look forward to doing it, and you won’t do it.

Radical acceptance of whatever comes up.

Thoughts, feelings, sensations, sights, sounds, judgments, evaluations, memories, fears, plans, hopes, regrets, pain, pleasure, urges…

All of it. No matter what.

This is what you’re practicing. How to let things come and let them go. Like clouds in the sky.

You can’t decide that some of them are good and some are bad. That’s not radical acceptance. That’s picking and choosing.

You need to be OK with all of them.

It doesn’t mean you have to like them. Only that you have to stop fighting them. You can still dislike them as much as you please.

You can still whine and complain about them. Just don’t fight them. Don’t try to get rid of them. Allow them to exist, to do their thing.

This is your business.


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