Meditation is sometimes considered to be too difficult to incorporate into a busy life. But it doesn’t have to be so. When I first started to meditate, I did find it hard, and so I want to show you how easy it can be.
I remember the first time I tried out meditation. I was with a group of people and the meditation I experienced was sufficiently deep to convince me it was a valid thing to do.
So, as I needed to radically change the way I viewed life, I decided I would set up a regular meditation practice. I sat for meditation twice a day, every day, 20 minutes each session. By the time I got to the end of 10 minutes I was close to climbing the wall, by the time I got to 15 minutes I had just started to settle, and at 20 minutes I often found some minor form of equanimity. Sometimes I just could not stand to do it, and got up and walked away.
In hindsight, with years of experience behind me, I now realise I set myself far too ambitious a target, especially as I had precious little of a support network to fall back on.
That was 27 years ago. Meditation, in the format that I learned it, was relatively new to the West, and we were all trying to find ways to integrate it into our Western lifestyles. (I did manage to establish a workable routine, which is why I am telling the tale here, but in the interest of encouraging meditation to be a more widespread and easily manageable practice, I do not recommend leaping in head first.)
But, it does not have to be like that! Nowadays we are much more aware of how to integrate changes into our busy lives, and ensure that we can carry on with the practice. It is pointless making great heroic gestures, and then discarding the practice because it is too difficult and/or too time consuming.
Baby steps all the way – that is how you learned to walk, isn’t it? And that is how to learn to meditate, or as I sometimes call it, commune with your inner being.
So, when you are first starting out, if you haven’t ever done any meditation before, take it in small steps. Promise yourself to have one session of 10 minutes a week. Put it in your diary, and do it! Note your success. Now you are ready to do it again next week, because you have succeeded in your first step.
At some stage you can then increase the frequency of your meditations until they are more or less daily. Again, don’t forget to set yourself a reminder. At this stage, still keep to 10 minutes for each meditation.
Once you are comfortable with sitting for 10 minutes daily, and you have a workable routine for it, you may be able to start increasing the length of the meditation. Again, do this in small increments, not more than 2 or 3 minutes at a time, and then keep that meditation length for a week or so. You will find what suits you.
In time, you may come to realise a number of things:
- That you often look forward to or appreciate the time out
- That you may be able to sit in comfort for longer than you expected
- You are gaining benefit from regular communing.
And, to help you with starting out here are two aids:
- Deep Connection Meditation – a distance weekly group meditation 8 pm UK time every Tuesday
- Audio guide