Mindfulness Meditation – Weeks 8 & 9

And finally! After weeks of learning and frustration here I am: a fully-fledged, newfound meditator.

Despite being a yogi, regular daily meditating was something I found really tough to do. I would sit there thinking,

“how can someone – anyone – spend longer than ten minutes doing this?”

Urgh, it’s excruciating. And then to actually do it every day (insert eyes boggling smiley here.

Let me fast forward to these past two weeks. Our final technique was “Combination Plate” and we all hated it. Yup, it was a toughie. There is no specific anchor in this technique (anchor is the focus point of your meditation), instead you sit patiently and silently, waiting for a disruption to your peaceful façade and you have to notice, is it one of these three things?

Talk, inside or outside your mind / A body sensation / A visual image

Then you label them using one of these words; Talk, Body or Image. Sounds easy, hey? Err… actually, no. Let me explain: usually, during my meditation I’m acknowledging  thoughts, then quietly and consciously bringing my awareness back to a focal point, for example my breath. With Combination Plate my consciousness is drawn to multiple stimulants; noise, body sensations, images, thoughts as they happen at the same time and separately, as one causes another and so on and so forth.

I found the technique distracting but eye opening. To think this is what my mind does every second of the day, constantly processing streams and streams of non-stop information. It makes me realise why it is so important for our health to just stop, press the pause button on our busy lives and simply stop. Stop and notice what is around us, stop and truly be involved in what we are doing, stop and honestly say that we are present. 

So, where to now? Indeed, now we get to choose just one technique to run with over the next six weeks, while we build our meditation practice up to 20 minutes. I discovered that I’m not a fan of the labelling techniques, I find them too distracting. My favourite techniques were the breath, naked sound and private screening. My chosen technique for the next six weeks will be the breath. This was the one I found the most relaxing.

Before I wrap all this up, let me take you back to my very first blog. Before I started my eight week course I wanted beyond anything else to have a better memory. Well finally! In the last week! I surprised myself on several occasions by actually remembering something. Call that my biggest breakthrough yet (my husband will be very pleased) and adding to this I now have a new found X-Man ability – I instinctively know how much time has passed. If I set a timer for anything, I know exactly when the alarm is going to go off. I’ll be controlling weather and turning invisible very soon, I’m sure.

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