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Meditation: I'm so hard on myself, I didn't know I was doing good!

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happygolucky

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I went to an anxiety support group today and I got the guts to tell the group about the constant chatter going on in my mind 24/7. We were supposed to set for ourselves some goals we'd like to achieve by the end of the 8 week program. I told them I wanted to stop the constant chatter in my mind but I didn't know how to go about doing that. I told them I had been practicing meditation for the past month, and all I've had been able to do was stop the chatter for 8 seconds. 3 persons in the group said: "Wow, that's great!"... my jaw hit the floor cause I didn't think 8 seconds in one month was good at all! Then someone said: "Some people spend a lifetime without 1 second of peace!!!"

I am hard on myself
I was thinking ~I only had 8 second~
They were thinking ~you had that many? wow~

Just thought I'd pass this along

instead of feeling like a failure :low:
they helped me see it like success :cheer:
 
SarahD

SarahD

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Glad you had a positive reaction and encouragement from the group.

It may be eight seconds in a month, but hopefully that is just the start.
 
H

happygolucky

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Maybe by next month I'll have 9 or 10! Perhaps I'm a little obsessed with measuring success (probably as "not good enough") :BLAH: rather than acknowledging it :cool:
 
shaky

shaky

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Maybe by next month I'll have 9 or 10! Perhaps I'm a little obsessed with measuring success (probably as "not good enough") :BLAH: rather than acknowledging it :cool:
Correct.
If you meditate with the aim to find peace, you won't find it.
You have to let the desire to be at peace go.
If you meditate 6 times and get no seconds without the chatter - it is not important. It is just good that you meditated.

Also, the busy mind that you strive to be rid of will see that you are working against it and work against you. So you might have eight seconds of peace now, but your busy mind will find a way to take even that success away from you.
Better to let these targets go and just meditate.


(I can say all this because I have studied meditation and did it for 5 years, but I don't anymore and I'm quite jealous you can get 8 seconds of peace.)
If you get quiet or you don't it is not 'success' or 'failure' it is just meditation.
 
tabbykitten

tabbykitten

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8 seconds really is very good indeed and more than I manage. I don’t get the voices, just intrusive thoughts. Not that I do a lot of meditation these days. As Shaky says though, don’t aim at targets.
Blimey hope all that makes sense!!
 
chesterking

chesterking

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I would be interested to know more about you experiences.

Are your voices constantly there?
Are they there in the morning?
Are they there when you do your meditation?

The reason this interests me is because I don't suffer from voices, but my mother does.
I have a different kind of schizophrenia compared to my mother. I wonder if it would be okay for her to do meditation?

Jim Malloy, a meditation teacher I talk to on the internet, said that people that hear voices are not suppose to do meditation. Is this correct?
 
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happygolucky

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Hi Shaky,

Thanks very much for this reminder... I reread the meditation guidelines in the course material I have from "The Mindfulness Solution to Pain" by Dr. Jackie Gardner-Nix and you are absolutely correct! Non-Striving... Choiceless Awareness... Not Goal Oriented... Striving, as the word implies gets one out of "resting"... in the book it says:
Trying implies opposition and struggle against, which you may not succeed at.
I see you learned your meditation skills well! :flowers:

From now on I'll just meditate. Thanks again Shaky!
 
H

happygolucky

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Hi Tabbykitten,

I see from this forum that there are many ways to describe the "voices". Intrusive thoughts -- I've called them audible thoughts, and some of them are intrusive. Perhaps those are the one's I need to just observe, describe and learn from as opposed to engage in.

What you said makes a lot of sense... don't aim at targets... just allow the practice of meditation (or anything for that matter) "to unfold naturally, in its own time, and not how you think it "should" be" another quote from The Mindfulness Solution to Pain by Jackie Gardner-Nix.
 
tabbykitten

tabbykitten

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I was coming back on this thread to suggest using Mindfulness. That way intrusive thoughts (I would say I almost certainly get those) and distressing past memories ( I definitely get those) can be handled a bit more easily. Less chance of stupid brain going round in circles and dwelling on stuff.

You are right in saying that “voices” can be understood in many ways - and at many different levels of traumatic experience of course
 
H

happygolucky

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Hello Chesterking:

Yes, the voices are constantly there; morning, noon and night and especially audible when I'm meditating. However, as I am learning, and relearning, through meditation is that, I can hear the voices, but I don't "have to" engage them... they are part of me (the world within me and the world around me) and if I avoid them, then, I am really just avoiding myself... but I really know that wherever I go there I am...

As far as the meditation teacher you talk to, I would ask him, why do he says that a person who hears voices should not practice meditation? I searched the internet, and found all kinds of references where meditation can help with hearing voices... in my own 8 second experience it helped to create a detachment from them (but now I know that I'm not to strive for that). I am not an expert however, I just started meditation a month ago. If you do ask why, I'd be interested to know what he says.
 
Kerome

Kerome

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Some meditation teachers are afraid of people with a background of psychosis and hallucination slipping into altered states of consciousness. They aren't trained to deal with it and often have little personal experience. Hence they will often advise against it, or sometimes refuse admission to classes or retreats.

But I've not yet heard of a case where mindfulness or short, gentle 10 minute meditations are anything other than beneficial.
 
D

Deliah

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Well done you, that is really amazing for someone so new to meditation. Remember, there is no wrong meditation. It is ok if your attention stays on the breath for one second or eights seconds, or whatever it is. It is what it is. You can't fail. Every time you bring your attention back to the breath you have trained that playful puppy (the mind) a little more. Attention is like a muscle. Keep going, you're amazing! D xxx
 
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