Why I Suck at Meditation–but do it anyway

Why I Suck at Meditation–but do it anyway

Oh my goodness.  It is Thursday at noon and I haven’t written this post yet.  I know perfectly well that you are not waiting with bated breath–but still. Writing on Thursdays is a commitment I made and not honoring it feels, well, wrong.  So here I am.

I’m going to talk about meditation, but first an update from the trenches.  I sit here surrounded by boxes, packing materials and stuff, upon stuff, upon stuff.  It is unbelievable how much a family can accumulate in fifteen years.  And the scariest part is that I have a 14 foot Pod sitting in my driveway that has yet to be tackled.

Just writing that makes my pulse quicken. But it’s ok, I think I have everything under control.  We are sending furniture to the kids in Dallas and Philadelphia.  I have sold a few things and have lots of donations lined up.

Want to know the craziest part?  I am playing in a mixed doubles tournament this weekend.  What the?  I know—right?  But we are the defending champions and it really matters to my husband (it matters to me too, just not as much as it would if we weren’t moving).

So–I am going to switch gears, forget about the house for the weekend and be really present for the tournament and do my part to maintain our title.

How am I going to do that, you ask?  Well with a little help from my meditation practice.  Last week I mentioned that I suck at meditation, but that I do it anyway.  That is 100% true.

If you have read anything about meditation (and how can you miss it, it seems to be everywhere these days), you see all of the amazing benefits you can get from the practice. Meditation helps with stress, anxiety, depression, sleep, memory, weight loss, emotion and attention control, PTSD–the list goes on.

Who wouldn’t want these benefits?  Well, I certainly would.  But, as with most of us, finding the time was a struggle.  And once I did find the time and sat down to meditate, I wasn’t able to “do it right.”  My mind was everywhere.  I would bring my attention to my breath, concentrate on the in/out for a few counts and then before I knew it I was thinking of the laundry or the repair guy I had forgotten to call.  Blah!!  What a hassle–I suck at this meditation thing.

But two months ago I decided to try again. This time I left all the “rules” by the side of the road.

I was going to sit and be still with myself for a few minutes every morning.  That was it.  Sounds nice, doesn’t it?

I didn’t set a timer.  I didn’t tell myself that I had to stay focused. I just decided that when I woke up in the morning I was going to slide down on the floor next to my bed, sit cross legged, close my eyes and breathe.

And that is exactly what I have done.  Most mornings my mind is everywhere.  And I let it go where it needs to.  There is no judgement. There is no right or wrong.  It is simply me sitting quietly on the floor with my eyes closed.

It has become a time solely for me.  I am still.  No one interrupts me (not even the dog). And whether I am able to concentrate on my breath or my mind is on other things, I am training myself to be quiet and peaceful.

Those 8-15 minutes have become something that I crave.  On the few mornings that I have missed it I feel off kilter.  Those centering minutes that I start each day with have had a profound effect.

In the past few weeks there have been movers, contractors, designers, repairmen, a gas leak–complete with fire trucks and con edison on the scene, a broken dishwasher and a pulled back muscle.

That doesn’t include my regular roles of being a wife and mom while running my business.

But the meditation has helped me keep it under control.  I’ve had my moments, for sure–but mostly I am keeping my head above water.  I feel that I am handling things as well as can be expected. The meditation keeps me in the present moment.  It allows me to focus on one thing at a time and reminds me that it will all be ok.

So this weekend I will put on my tennis whites, show up and truly be present.  I will focus on my hubby and the ball and winning points. Because that is all that matters while I am on the court.  The house and the packing and the mess isn’t going anywhere.  It will all be waiting when I return–hopefully with trophy in hand.

Over to you.  Do you meditate?  Do you wish you did?  What do you think it would take to start including it in your life?  These are the types of things that I help women with when they sign up for coaching.  Please hit “contact” in the upper right hand corner if you would like some assistance in getting this or some other healthy habit into your daily routine.

And wish us luck this weekend!



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10 Responses to Why I Suck at Meditation–but do it anyway

  1. Cathy says:

    Love the story and the ease you’ve opened up for yourself around meditation, Lorna. I’ve found that I do much better when I don’t have to follow any rules. As a matter of fact, I do much better when I don’t even feel the need to stay put on a cushion – walking meditation has become part of my walking-my-son-to-school-routine.

    Good luck at the tournament. The house and the boxes will still be there.

  2. Good luck this weekend, Lorna! My meditation is a moving one. I find that chopping vegetables slowly and deliberately and making homemade soup helps me slow down and savor my life. I may hit the pillow someday but thus far I suck at that kind of meditation.

  3. Susie says:

    I love that you are creating a morning ritual. Getting quiet to connect is calming and restorative (even if you have 100 to do later). You can move throughout your day more easily. Meditation comes in many forms…exercise being one of them. Can’t wait to hear if you defended your title 😉

  4. Lois Olson says:

    Lorna, I love how you chose your own way to meditate, outside-the-box. Each one of us is so different so it makes sense that our way of getting quiet and still would be as well.

    For me, that looks like getting up, making my first cup of coffee, sitting in my Pottery Barn armchair with my feet up on my ottoman and reading my chronological study Bible. It’s set up to read so many pages a day to get through it in a year, but I’m a rule breaker and only read what I need to feel calm that morning whether it’s a paragraph or several pages.

    I find that by getting quiet each morning and spending it with God, I’m a much better person and more at peace with myself.

    Thank you for sharing. Your words on the mess at home still being there when you get back from the tennis tournament with your husband are wonderful because it shows the rest of us how to let go of the urgent in exchange for the most important. I love your sense of purpose in showing up and being fully present and investing in those relationships.

    Wishing for you and your husband a shiny trophy this weekend. Defend that championship. 😉 You can do it!

  5. Michelle says:

    Hahahaha!!! I always joke that I suck at meditation as well. 😀 But I always come back to it. Because it keeps me grounded. It keeps me centered. It keeps me open.

    I hope your tournament was great!

  6. Dana says:

    Lorna, WOW, you’ve got some things going on. Good luck with the title! I switch it up, I meditate and also do moving meditation when hiking in nature, listening to music, yoga or plugging into my ipod and banging weights around. Great post!

  7. Elizabeth MacLeod says:

    Good luck with it all!!!! Holy! Meditation and me dance together, and the thing is, I don’t think I actually think I’m doing meditation when I actually am. It’s a part of my life. But formal mediation, I really want to do more of that. And after reading this, acknowledging what I do do, and well, It made me want to get a meditation practice going again… in a more formal way. Yeah. So guess what . . . I will do the first thing today . . . and put my meditation skin in the place I would like it to be, so I can begin. I’m going to do it right now. Thank you for that little nudge. :) great post.

  8. farah says:

    Good luck with the move! I also feel I have to ‘make the time’ and ironically and most restless when I make myself meditate! When I’m in flow, the mornings mostly, it is so much easier and enjoyable :)

  9. Cathy Sykora says:

    Meditation has become very important in my life, and I agree, on days that I miss it, things are just “off”. It always amazes me how something so simple can create such a big impact in my life. It allows me to be present in the moment and take things as they come. It is absolutely a practice and discipline. I think you are spot on when you talk about letting go of any judgment. It is so important to let meditation be what it is at that moment. Thank you for sharing!

  10. april says:

    i can totally relate to moving, packing, stuff upon stuff upon stuff. i’ve changed locations often, most recently one year ago (this time to a nomadic state).

    your suggestions for leaving the meditation rules behind and just being still with yourself are so welcome, lorna.

    i too have never been able to quiet my mind enough to appreciate meditation. however, in the past month, i’ve started the practice of qigong and the meditative process is happening naturally through this exercise. i think i may add your ideas to the mix as well. thank you.

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