Mind/Body/Spirit

5 Common Meditation Mistakes That Cause More Harm Than Good

Do you utilize meditation?

If not, why don’t you?

You know what? I think I have an idea as to why you may not be meditating every day.

When I first started meditating, I had so many different rules for relaxation. Crazy, right? I had to be in a certain room, a certain headspace, sitting in a specific pose and ugh. The rest of the list is just ridiculous. I was too focused on everything, but meditating! I was making very common meditation mistakes that were not putting me in a calm, relaxed state. So, here are the 5 common mediation mistakes that cause more harm than good.

“I Have To Think Of Nothing”

The most common misconception about meditation is that you can not think of anything while meditating. In fact, people who think this tend to think more because they are too focused on it and not the act of meditation.

Instead of trying to prevent thoughts and feelings, acknowledge them and address them. Ask yourself clear clarifying questions as a follow-up to your thoughts and feelings to properly process, then eliminate them. People think that the purpose of meditation is to shut down your thoughts, but this is far from the truth. Meditation ameliorates your self-awareness.

“I Have To Do It When I Am Calm And Relaxed”

You won’t always be calm and relaxed! In fact, most use meditation to stay present and in the moment. In other words, they use meditation to practice and cultivate mindfulness.

Let’s say you had a very frustrating conversation with someone and would like to calm yourself before reacting to your impulses. If you tell yourself that you have to wait until you are calm to meditate, then you will teach yourself that meditation can not help you in times of anger. You may turn to electronic devices, venting to a friend before processing your feelings, and unhealthy coping mechanisms to name a few.

Meditation is one of the ultimate forms of going within to calm and center yourself. Honestly the more distractions — the better! You will learn how to silence the external noise. However, practice makes perfect! Once you have mastered meditation in silence and free from distractions, open your window. Allow the weather, animals, traffic, and people to be the background noise. After you master noise, move on to meditating while someone is in your presence.

“I Must To Sit A Certain Way”

A common misconception is that meditation is not working properly if a person is not sitting in a certain position to meditate. Did you know that simply taking a conscious moment to inhale deeply and exhale is meditation? Yes, that is a meditation that can be used when it is needed the most.

You do not have to sit with your legs crossed on the floor. While in an elevator, you can meditate for a few moments. After a big meeting a work, you can meditate at your desk. Your body doesn’t need to be in a certain position to receive the health benefits of meditation.

To be clear, there are certain sitting poses that channel certain energy into your meditation. However, when starting out, you should focus more on you — the individual.

“I Need To Research Thoroughly To Know How To Do It Properly”

Meditation is as easy as: inhaling consciously and exhaling deeply. No, seriously. It is that simple.

Is there a history to mediation, YES. Do you need to know all of that information to get what you need from it, NO. Do not allow your lack of knowledge about meditatio to intimidate you. Mediation has so many benefits and once you start doing it you will naturally want to read more about it.

So, let’s put the 500 page Mediation 101 book down and actually meditate. 🙂

“I Can Only Do Guided Meditations As A Newbie”

Guided meditations are all the rage. They have apps, books, videos on YouTube and even classes for it. Don’t get me wrong, I think they are great! However, it should not be your only form of meditation.

Meditation should guide you to self-realization through self-awareness. The most important part of mediation is facing your inner thoughts on your own. When you rely heavily on external aids to direct and calm your inner thoughts, then you completely defeat the purpose of meditation.

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