When you first begin to meditate, the process can appear challenging, unconventional and even counter-intuitive. Not only that, it that requires patience, persistence and determination to succeed.
The benefits aren’t always immediate and they can be ever so subtle, which is why it is important to have an understanding about the prevailing process. Enter each sit with your expectations to one side and let the process do its work.
The yardstick of your progress is increased awareness and greater equanimity. That is, the mindfulness and focused attention you’re developing, and the balance you’re bringing to navigate life’s ups and downs.
When your awareness increases, you:
- Are more in tune with your thinking, being able to pinpoint thoughts and assess whether they are advancing you or impeding you.
- Are more open-minded, as space is created in the mind for new ideas and solutions to surface.
- Have longer streams of clarity and begin to experience more ‘blind flashes of the obvious’ as your mind stills and stabilises.
When your equanimity increases:
- You become less distracted by projections into the future, ruminations of the past or looping, cyclical thoughts.
- Your resilience increases, you’re more easily able to negotiate difficult situations and you become more comfortable stirring with uncomfortable feelings.
- You become more balanced and less reactive to the Ups and Downs that underscore your daily experience.
The effects won’t happen all at once, they can be fleeting and some days you may not notice them at all; but they are unfolding each time you take some time out to meditate.
The key is the attitude you’re bringing to each sit, and noticing the mental victories that culminate over time.
And even just five minutes of meditation a day is a perfect opportunity to develop the calm, focus and clarity needed to perform at your peak.
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