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Mind Wandering Meditation

Looking for a frustrating way to calm down? Try Meditation.

The science of meditation is murky. According to this article from 2017 in Scientific American, the studies done thus far have created no concrete findings. A more recent, 2023 article from Vox explains, "The new science of meditation is just getting started."

As anyone who has tried meditation knows, there is frustration involved. Think, Elizabeth Gilbert in India, trudging through the experience at the heart of her 'pray' moment.

Embrace the Frustration?

Although the science is wishy-washy, most people who take time for quiet meditation will tell you they experience benefits. I have practiced meditation for years and I can say it isn't a magical route to enlightenment, but there is positivity. In the beginning, I sat down expecting to find peace quickly. I felt like a failure when thoughts continued to pop up uncontrollably no matter how long I sat still.

I understood there would be effort, but what I did not understand was that the practice of meditation is not about the quiet moments. Rather, it is the practice of redirecting your mind again and again. In this practice, over time, you more quickly and more efficiently end up in the quiet space you seek. It took me many years to understand that the task of redirecting your thoughts to a steady quiet center is the meditation.

Finding Your Meditation

There isn't one right way to meditate. Some people use mantras, some people pray, and some allow thoughts to wax and wane. The only thing that matters really, is that it is your practice. What method do you need to find the benefits in your quiet space?

For a detailed list of techniques and resources check out Headspace (not sponsored)

They have an app and many great explanations of the different techniques to help you decide which is right for you.

My personal favorite resource for meditation is Calm on YouTube, they also have an app, but I tend to download and forget. YouTube is an easy peasy way to get the same benefits fuss-free! Click here to try my go-to ten-minute guided meditation by Calm.

Meditate on This

Taking time to meditate will be frustrating at times. Sometimes it may even exacerbate stress. There is a time and place for everything, and adding a practice to your life when you aren't ready or open to it is not something I recommend. But, I do believe that we make time for what matters and your mind definitely matters.

Try reading through the different methods and techniques and give yourself ten minutes a day for a month. You may begin to notice a space between events and your reaction. You may notice yourself sleeping better, or your mind feeling a bit more familiar to you.

Although I can still be flighty and have cranky days, of course, and I am certainly not enlightened, I have grown a sense of awareness from time spent in reflection. My practice has given me a familiar place to bring my mind each day and see what comes up, and work on guiding my thoughts in the direction of my choosing. The greatest benefits are yet to come, as I plan to maintain and grow my practice throughout my life.

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