Author Topic: HELP  (Read 576 times)

planetmaz

  • Member
  • Who are you?
    • Meditation
HELP
« on: April 17, 2018, 05:50:54 AM »
Hello people of this forum,

I have been practicing meditation for a while now, the journey started about over two years ago.

Anyhow, I have made strides in my ability to focus on my in-out breath and find myself feeling grounded, centered, connected with my body, more relaxed and mindful of the present moment.

It’s been fantastic given that most days I used to struggle with my anxiety and overthinkingness about everything, and being trenched in negativity and I feel that now at least half my days are spent feeling connected and more positive and open.

The other half of my days I have found ways to cope better with my thinking and feelings and general negative perception of things.

My question is as follows….

I mediate on day one (for example) and I find myself being able to really feel my in-out breath and find myself in a mindful state the rest of the day

The following day (day two), I wake up feeling spaced out, unable to concentrate, disconnected from my body, forgetful … even the meditation feels different on this day… it’s like I am unable to get to that state of focus that day one offers…

Rinse wash and repeat

The next day is a repeat of day one, and then day two, then day one, then day two… onward and onward…

It’s a bit frustrating because the days where I am mindful, I make MOVES in business and life… in day two I struggle though I cope I am not as productive, I hold myself back... Also I feel like I’m losing out on 50% of my days, I want to perform at a high level for 100% of my days :P

It’s like a mindfulness hangover, I feel as though my brain uses all this energy on day one through it’s focussedness and then completely let’s go on day two…

I’m not sure – have you heard of anything like this before? What I’m saying is very much consistent for me…

Maz

stillpointdancer

  • stillpointdancer
  • Member
  • Retired teacher, deepening understanding of Dharma
    • Insight meditation
    • Exploring the results of 30 years of meditating
Re: HELP
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2018, 11:24:42 AM »
It could be that you are ready to move on to another stage in mindfulness practice. Are you following a set program, or are you staying just with mindfulness of breathing?
“You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.” Franz Kafka

Laurent

  • Member
  • don't feed the troll
Re: HELP
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2018, 12:10:17 PM »
Hello,

What you are experiencing is normal. It is hindrances that appear in meditation. Those hindrances prevent you from meditating.
You see that sometimes they are here and sometimes they are not. When they are not here, you are able to focus on your meditation object, otherwise you are not.
Observing breath while there is an obvious thing that prevents doing it, is like seeing nearby. It is like not seeing or seeing in a blurred way what happens in reality. You know there is a problem but you don't see it, because you don't watch it.
Try the following thing: without abandonning your neutrality, observe with attention this hindrance, whatever it appears, sensations, thought process or even a feeling and try to distinguish about it. You can ask where it is or how it fluctuates, or other things.
More briefly, you take the problem as your meditation object instead of watching something else, and then your are still meditating while having problems, which are not problems anymore  :D

Good luck!

planetmaz

  • Member
  • Who are you?
    • Meditation
Re: HELP
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2018, 05:42:40 AM »
It could be that you are ready to move on to another stage in mindfulness practice. Are you following a set program, or are you staying just with mindfulness of breathing?

I have been staying with mindfulness of breathing. I practice every morning before work for 10 minutes.

planetmaz

  • Member
  • Who are you?
    • Meditation
Re: HELP
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2018, 06:00:33 AM »
Hello,

What you are experiencing is normal. It is hindrances that appear in meditation. Those hindrances prevent you from meditating.
You see that sometimes they are here and sometimes they are not. When they are not here, you are able to focus on your meditation object, otherwise you are not.
Observing breath while there is an obvious thing that prevents doing it, is like seeing nearby. It is like not seeing or seeing in a blurred way what happens in reality. You know there is a problem but you don't see it, because you don't watch it.
Try the following thing: without abandonning your neutrality, observe with attention this hindrance, whatever it appears, sensations, thought process or even a feeling and try to distinguish about it. You can ask where it is or how it fluctuates, or other things.
More briefly, you take the problem as your meditation object instead of watching something else, and then your are still meditating while having problems, which are not problems anymore  :D

Good luck!

Appreciate the advice, thank you!

Days where I struggle with with my practice goes like this. I watch my thoughts. I feel less in a place of "neutrality" I try and watch my thoughts so I can let them go and not let them latch on to me. As the day progresses, I begin to feel more flustered and generally stressed out and tight in the head area.

By the end of the day, the tightness in my head is like a flexed muscle that doesn't stop flexing. My mood is low energy and the primary sensation is tightness in the front of my head, like behind my forehead. It feels like stress. However, I am not sure what is stressing me out. As much as I pay attention to my incoming thoughts, they all seem focused on small details like "oh I moved my phone in a jerky way, I must not be in a meditative state". Overtime these thoughts start to come quicker and quicker, I get distracted and lose track and then by the end of the day I no longer can see what my thoughts are (maybe my unconscious mind is control at this point) but I am consistently stressed no matter where I am or what I do (unless my girlfriend is over in which case I am super distracted and it goes away totally).

On those days, I repeat to myself that "the work I'm doing is worth doing even if I'm doing it without a mindful state of mind - it all adds up" and I push myself through my work in a prioritized manner.

My attitude in general has been that my practice has taken me to a place where I am finding general peace and focus and high productivity 1/2 days where it used to be 1/30 days (in a good month). So I have made progress, and I feel I'm on the right track so I will keep practicing.

My concern has been that the technique that took me to an effective meditative state 1/2 days is not going to take me the distance and perhaps I need to add something or change something. Also, I find it odd that it's 1/2 days, it's clockwork, the pattern suggests something to me, a puzzle of sorts to solve but perhaps I already have the key and I just need to keep doing what I'm doing. Everything feels so close.

I've also considered self-sabotaging beliefs and thoughts on day 2 which do appear for sure however, I have done work to let them go when they appear and my belief that there is light at the end of this path is much stronger than any opposing belief.

Sorry for the long read, it's kind of everything that I've been thinking / feeling lately about my meditation - this has been occupying my mind greatly haha *nervous laughter

Laurent

  • Member
  • don't feed the troll
Re: HELP
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2018, 11:50:45 AM »
Personally, when i have big issues in meditation, i say myself that it is still possible to practice patience. Patience is my ultimate stronghold when everything goes wrong. It is like being in a storm, so violent that you couldn't do anything else than wait until it stops anyway. It is still possible to stay patient inside the storm, though.
I find very effective to observe the storm itself, in different ways, until there is some fixing point where i can stay long and then the storm tends to decrease.
I also find useful to say myself that current conditions are due to past, and future conditions are due to present, so what is really important is not what i experiment in current meditation, but what i am currently producing in response. I see meditation more as global process over time, than an immediate success/failure. Success or failure build up over the long term.

Metta

dharma bum

  • Moderator
  • Certified Zen Master (second degree black belt)
    • vipassana
Re: HELP
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2018, 01:06:18 PM »
perhaps it is a question of expectations. when you've had what you regard as a good day, your expectations rise and that interferes with your meditation and cause what you regard as a poor day, which lowers your expectation and then you have a good day. i've also found that it is easier to focus when you're somewhat stressed than when you're relatively relaxed because we don't have that much practice of meditating when we're feeling good.
Mostly ignorant

stillpointdancer

  • stillpointdancer
  • Member
  • Retired teacher, deepening understanding of Dharma
    • Insight meditation
    • Exploring the results of 30 years of meditating
Re: HELP
« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2018, 11:46:06 AM »
It could be that you are ready to move on to another stage in mindfulness practice. Are you following a set program, or are you staying just with mindfulness of breathing?

I have been staying with mindfulness of breathing. I practice every morning before work for 10 minutes.
When you say you have been staying with mindfulness of breathing, which stages of mindfulness of breathing do you mean? Which have you selected for the ten minutes?
“You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.” Franz Kafka

planetmaz

  • Member
  • Who are you?
    • Meditation
Re: HELP
« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2018, 12:08:54 AM »
Personally, when i have big issues in meditation, i say myself that it is still possible to practice patience. Patience is my ultimate stronghold when everything goes wrong. It is like being in a storm, so violent that you couldn't do anything else than wait until it stops anyway. It is still possible to stay patient inside the storm, though.
I find very effective to observe the storm itself, in different ways, until there is some fixing point where i can stay long and then the storm tends to decrease.
I also find useful to say myself that current conditions are due to past, and future conditions are due to present, so what is really important is not what i experiment in current meditation, but what i am currently producing in response. I see meditation more as global process over time, than an immediate success/failure. Success or failure build up over the long term.

Metta

Thank you, I am keeping this in mind on "busier" "stormier" days and it's helpful

planetmaz

  • Member
  • Who are you?
    • Meditation
Re: HELP
« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2018, 12:09:35 AM »
perhaps it is a question of expectations. when you've had what you regard as a good day, your expectations rise and that interferes with your meditation and cause what you regard as a poor day, which lowers your expectation and then you have a good day. i've also found that it is easier to focus when you're somewhat stressed than when you're relatively relaxed because we don't have that much practice of meditating when we're feeling good.

These are good points thank you

planetmaz

  • Member
  • Who are you?
    • Meditation
Re: HELP
« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2018, 12:11:48 AM »
It could be that you are ready to move on to another stage in mindfulness practice. Are you following a set program, or are you staying just with mindfulness of breathing?

I have been staying with mindfulness of breathing. I practice every morning before work for 10 minutes.
When you say you have been staying with mindfulness of breathing, which stages of mindfulness of breathing do you mean? Which have you selected for the ten minutes?

I'm not sure what stages you're referring to, I mean I read The Mindful Athlete a little while ago and that covered the five superpowers of mindfulness meditation.

I don't feel much in the way of stages other than, I am feeling anxious and stressed, then I begin to breath in and out and within minutes I feel a sensation in my head that brings a deep focus to my body breathing thoughts and activities. I feel happier on these days.