Meditation #Fail #Fail #Success!

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Lisa Alioto

01 December 2019 30 comments

Meditation:

A practice where an individual uses a technique – such as mindfulness, or focusing their mind on a particular object, thought or activity – to train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm state.[1]

I’ve heard a lot about meditation…. And yet I still didn’t really know what it was.  To be honest, I had no intention of learning more.  I was all about daily sweaty workouts and very physical outdoor adventures.  Slowing down, mindfulness, breathing exercises….  this was all foreign to me.  And… I really didn’t have an interest or feel a need to learn more.

Phase I: 

Then I got stressed and felt that I needed more than just my daily workouts.  So, I tried listening to a meditation DVD.   During the sessions though, I found myself thinking of anything and everything but….  I completely failed to focus on meditating.  This went on day after day – my mind going a million places except for how I was being guided through the meditation session.   I felt like I was failing with no chance of success in sight.

Phase II:

Then, things changed a bit.  Soon I found I was simply falling asleep in the middle of meditation. Apparently, I went from a brain on high speed during these sessions to one that was out cold during them.  I wasn’t sure if this meant I was a meditation rock star or that I was just failing in a new way.  

Phase III:

Eventually I hit what I call phase three. I not only learned to meditate but I could do it without any guidance.  Besides using it in life in general, I quickly found it to be a huge help in easing my anxiety during exams, stressful interactions, medical procedures, etc…  By focusing on my breathing, my body relaxed making whatever I was facing go better and become more stress-free for me. Success!   

Admittedly I don’t make as much time for it as I should.  And I know personally I would be so much better off if I did.  Knowing I have this gem in my back pocket though for when I really need it has been a gift and a relief.  

So, that’s my meditation story…. I went in completely blind and I ended up finding some great success with it!  I would love to hear how others first journeyed into it and how they use it.   I definitely could expand my use of it and reap more benefits from it.   Baby steps for now, bigger steps on the way.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meditation

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30 thoughts on “Meditation #Fail #Fail #Success!

  1. Lisa, I too have aways been intrigued by ‘meditation’. I honestly believe that praying is a type of meditation as well, but I especially like the emphasis on ‘breathing’ which makes meditation a little more different. Also I believe having a ‘daily mantra affirmation’ works wonders as well. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      I agree with you on all accounts Beth – all great points! I love the emphasis on breathing in particular – it’s a great distraction from stress, etc.. and before you know it your mind is clear.

    2. I’m so impressed you’ve hacked the code to meditation. I get discouraged and I leave it, and then a few months later I come back to it and try again. I just find it difficult to focus and then I get discouraged. I’ll try and stick to it!
      Jazmin

      1. I found it very discouraging at first. In fact, I at one point came to the conclusion that it just wasn’t going to happen. It took a lot of patience and practice to make it work but now it comes effortlessly to me and it’s a priceless tool in my toolbox. i encourage you to keep trying; I want this for you too! 🙂

  2. This gives me hope! I’ve tried meditation a couple of times but never made it beyond phase 1. Maybe I need to try again and persevere a little more x

    Sophie
    http://www.glowsteady.co.uk

  3. Hi Sophie – yes! Keep trying! 🙂 It really does take practice but in not too long it happens and it’s amazing!

  4. Love this! I used to have a lot of trouble handling my anxiety, and meditation was a remedy often recommended to me by friends and therapists alike. I thought it sounded like it wouldn’t work at first, but it actually had surprisingly positive results! I haven’t done it in a while, but I’ve been meaning to start again as it really was so helpful.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      I’m glad to hear that you’ve enjoyed the benefits of meditation as well Meredith! It’s hard to believe how great it really does work!

  5. Some years back, I visited swami Ramkrishna Debs ashram at Dakshineswar Kolkata(India). His great follower & disciple Swami Vivekananda had given a lecture at the World ‘s Parliament of Religions, Chicago, 1893. In today’s lifestyle, we are producing so much anxiety, exhaustion.depression. To relieve us from all of these, we need meditation desperately. Meditation can free up our mind & made us concentrate on our work. Meditation & yoga is a medicine for our mind & soul. I regularly practice Yoga.

  6. I am with you Jason completely – thank you for sharing that historical perspective!

  7. Mediation has never worked for me, and in some cases it will trigger a psychotic episode. So I’ve given up on using it for myself. I still recommend it for others, but with a warning if they have anxiety that’s similar to mine

    1. Good to know about that warning – thanks for sharing! It works well for so many but like everything it’s not a one size fits all.

  8. Thanks for sharing your experience. I would definitely need to do it with guidance, my brain loves to wander. LOL

    1. I hear ya Cynthia – mine does too. It took me a lot of practice to get past that but once I did – wow!

      Lisa

  9. I love meditation it’s the first thing I do in the morning and the last thing at night.

    1. I’m impressed Thkeya – I wish I was that disciplined. I’m working up to a schedule like that still.

      Lisa

  10. One of my clients practices meditation and she always says that you need to find what works for you rather than follow a prescription. She’s one of the most balanced people I know, so I know it works! Lisa 🙂

    1. Yes! I completely agree with your client Lisa. It’s not a one size fits all – you need to figure out what and how meditation works best for you.

  11. Thank you for sharing your honest experience with meditation. Alleviating any type of stress is always beneficial and takes practice. But thank you!

    1. You are very welcome Lia – thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment!

  12. Great post! When I first tried meditation. I found the same. Every thought I wasn’t supposed to think, was all I could think about. Then there was no thought. But also no focus. I still dont meditate as often as I want or should. But i did learn something about meditation. It’s not about stopping the thought completely. It’s about allowing the thought to come in then drift away. Essentially learning to quiet the outside chatter so you can refocus your focus. Sounds weird I know. But it’s a massively valuable tool. Learning to let the noise of life flow around you rather than through you is very much the centre of keeping emotionaly and mentaly calm.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      You’ve beautifully stated the essence of meditation! I love your comment about refocusing your focus.

      Thanks for sharing – great insights!

  13. Have tried to meditate quite a few times & ended up with distraction ????
    Maybe I’ll give it one more try!

    Much Love,
    Farzanah Mohamed ♥️

    1. Lisa Alioto

      Hi Farzanah, I would definitely consider giving it a few more tries. I was distracted for quite a few sessions before I hit phase two. Then phase three came quickly and beautifully stuck.

      Lisa

  14. Wow, I have never been able to meditate. This is a saver for sure!! Thank you so much for sharing!

    1. You are very welcome Ann – I hope that at some point you can get it to work for you. I know it took me a while. It’s really great!

  15. I am in need of meditation! I’ve recently started trying it and like you in the beginning I have not succeeded yet. Not sure how many phases or fails it’s going to take me. lol I will not give up because I really feel I can benefit from meditation. Your article gives me hope and encouragement!

    1. I’m glad it gave you hope and encouragement. You will get it – you will. And then you will experience the wonders of meditation. 🙂

  16. So glad you persisted and succeeded to make it work. I’ve heard so much about the benefits of meditating but I can’t bring myself to try it. But, I really need to. Thanks for sharing your experience.

    1. Your’re welcome! I really struggled to make myself try it too – I was into mountain climbing, hard core workouts, etc… In short, I really didn’t think it was for me. Who knew! 🙂

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