When meditating on a daily basis, you will discover that your session is not the same each time. You will notice that some days it’s easier to get distracted and harder to keep your attention alert.
In this article, I will explain how to deal with distractions when meditating and how to get rid of the negative feelings that may occur.
I believe that anyone, in one way or another, has been caught up in the trap feeling angry, disappointed, sad or discouraged when dealing with the distractions.
You sit down to start your session feeling relaxed and inspired.
The first distraction comes and you get lost into it for a couple of seconds or minutes, when you realize you have been distracted, you gently turn your attention to your meditation object again.
This happens again and again…
While in the beginning you feel ok, after a while you may say: “Not again! I have to focus harder now”. It’s at this point when the negative feelings start to arise.
In this case actually, except the negative feelings that comes along with the “Not again!”, the feeling of pressure may also arise when we say to ourselves “I have to focus harder”.
This situation creates a complex of negative emotions.
If we have negative feelings every time we have realized that our mind has been distracted, our session will get worse and worse. We will stop being relaxed and have agitation and disturbance inside of us. If you create an agitated mindset the only thing you will achieve is to get unmotivated or even quit all your efforts.
Meditation is about having a relaxed and neutral mindset. Negative feelings are surely not going to lead us to that result and we will definitely not want to stick to our practice if we make it unpleasant.
What to do
What really helps is to reverse your way of thinking about your practice. Instead of thinking that you have to keep your attention stable, think your session as a game where you have to catch your mind wandering.
Every time you realize that your mind has been wandering instead of thinking “Damn! I lost it again!”, think “Haha! I caught you! I’m very good at this”; then you just bring your attention gently back to your meditation object feeling grateful.
Congratulating yourself, will bring positivity to your practice and will help you not to develop any negative feelings. You will see that the results are amazing when doing this, and that you will be able to keep your attention for longer periods of time.
Now, I know that some of you will say that meditation is about being non-judgemental and having a neutral attitude about the distractions. I agree, and that’s our ultimate goal. I just believe that having a pinch of positivity by praising ourselves is a good way for a beginner to avoid negative feelings from raising and growing.
Because when we have negative feelings, we have absolutely no balance or relaxation inside of us. Instead, there is a war going on inside of us.
Positive feelings will bring a peaceful and harmonized mindset, but maybe not a neutral one. That’s ok. Because after knowing how to fight with the negativity and achieve a balanced and relaxed mindset it will be much more easy to go to the next step being neutral.
Congratulating yourself is just a tool to get where we want and train our mind.
What if we have a particular thought or feeling that keeps insisting
There can be many reasons why a particular thought can be stuck in our head. An argument at work, a situation we don’t like or any kind of event or person that affects us.
In this case, I recommend to start your practice with a visualization. If you notice a persistent thought during your meditation, do the visualization at that moment and then come back to your regular meditation practice.
Read the visualization.