Why Is It So Hard To Meditate?


Why Is It So Hard to Meditate? 

By Deanie Eichenstein, Psy.D.


Deanie Eichenstein, one of our earliest and longest supporters, is a practicing therapist in Los Angeles. When she's not helping adolescent and millennial women, she's keeping it real on Instagram—equal parts Freud and Kardashian. 

We’ve all heard of the numerous benefits of meditating. It will improve your sleep, your stress, your focus! It will even change the structure of your brain! Doesn’t everyone want to sleep better, to feel more at peace, and to be able to focus longer at work? Sure! So, why aren’t we meditating? Here are 4 tips to help you actually cultivate a mindfulness meditation practice:

1. Set a realistic goal.

Instead of attempting to go from never meditating, to meditating an hour each day, try setting a goal to mediate for five minutes, once a week. Choose a specific day and time when you know you are available, and set a reminder on your phone so you won’t forget.

2. Use resources.

Instead of trying to guide yourself through a meditation, get an app to lead you! Having a voice guide you through meditation might help you focus on the present moment more. Headspace and Calm  are two good options. Want a more communal meditation experience? Check out the Mind Body App for meditation classes in your area. ClassPass also features some meditation sessions as well.

3. You don’t have to sit still.

Is it hard for you to be still? Meditate while you wash the dishes or go for a walk. Pick one sense to focus on—sight, smell, sound, taste or touch—and continue to bring your attention back to this as your mind tries to wander.

4. Remind yourself that there is no wrong way to meditate!

You are doing exactly what you need to do! Meditation is not about doing, it’s about being. Notice your judgments (without getting mad at yourself for having them) and bring yourself back to your focal point. 

Photo: via Christy Dawn

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