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My 30-Day Meditation Challenge

30-day-meditation-challenge

“To understand the immeasurable, the mind must be extraordinarily quiet, still.”
Jiddu Krishnamurti

If you hear the word meditation and immediately think of hippies, cross-legged Buddhas and a lot of ‘omm-ing’, you’d be forgiven: I used to think this too. If you’d have told me a year or two ago that I’d be writing about meditation, let along practising it, I’d have found it amusing.

I first became interested in meditation when I was looking for ways to calm my anxiety. In recent years, I’ve found my brain to be a lot busier, and struggle sometimes to switch off those thoughts, worries, concerns and regrets. I started to lose sleep; found certain social situations daunting and spent countless hours going over and over things in my head.

Meditation kept popping up as I looked into how I could make things easier for myself, and I kept disregarding it. “It’s not for me”, I’d say, or, “that won’t work”. It wasn’t until I read Ruby Wax’s booked A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled that I started to take it a bit more seriously.

Meditating isn’t easy: a lot of people I’ve talked to think you simply sit in a quiet place, close your eyes and do nothing. Actually, doing nothing isn’t what you’re trying to achieve: it’s thinking nothing. In the words of Ruby herself:

“We’re caught up in distraction all the time[…]It takes gallons of willpower to get yourself to sit and practice.”

The first time I tried to meditate, I ended up writing the shopping list in my head; and thinking about that email I sent earlier in the day; and whether or not that email came across rude or not; and whether that meant I was a terrible human being and maybe I’ll get fired? It’s safe to say, I didn’t end that experience feeling calm and zen and like a floating cloud. In fact, my torturous brain seemed to be having a field day.

But this is totally normal. Meditation takes practice, but it’s something that I truly believe will help calm my mind, and bring my focus back. That’s why I’m challenging myself to a 30-day meditation journey.

Throughout November, I’ve tasked myself with meditating every single day. It can be for 5 minutes, or 20 minutes, or a whole hour if I fancy it. No pressure. This is for me, not for anyone else.

I’ve had the Calm app on my phone for a while, and it’s just sat that doing nothing. Now is it’s moment of glory.

On Wednesday, I got home from work, went upstairs, sat on my bed and meditated for 15 minutes. After a busy day in the office that had left me feeling a little frazzled and with a to-do list three times the size it had been in the morning, just quarter of an hour to myself with no distractions and no worries was exactly what I needed. Sure, my mind wandered from time to time, but when the 15 minutes was up and I opened my eyes, the world didn’t seem quite so overwhelming.

I’ll keep you updated on how my challenge is going. If I miss a day, or don’t fancy it one weekend, I won’t punish myself. Like I said, this isn’t to prove anything other than that meditation can really work wonders.

Namaste x

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1 Comment

  • Reply katie

    I’ve got the calm app too. Interested to hear how you get on. I find meditating really helps. Sometimes it’s good to just let the thoughts come and go and not stress too much about thinking nothing. It’s hard to switch off completely. Good luck ! x

    November 6, 2017 at 4:05 pm
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