I was a little reluctant to give meditation a try because of all the misconceptions around it. Here are five that held me back. But now that I’ve tried it for myself, I know for a fact that they are misconceptions.
Think of nothing
Yeah, that. I was always told that I should try to not think of anything while meditating. This meant that every time a thought came in, I felt I was doing something wrong and tried to push it out. And this inevitably led to more thoughts and everything came crashing down. But meditation is not about you trying to keep thoughts out but being mindful of thoughts passing. You eventually get good at concentrating on your breath or a mantra and are able to keep thoughts at bay. But it’s natural to have thoughts cross your mind.
It takes a lot of time to see results
No, it doesn’t. Start with 10 mins every day and you start experiencing results from day one. Progress is slow but significant. I started meditating to control my anger issues and have better focus. The very fact that I was trying to do so by itself changed things.
You have to meditate in the morning
I guess this is because popular media (including the header image for this post) shows people meditating in the morning and not while they are in an office or in the afternoon. Including meditation in your morning routine is recommended, but you can meditate anytime, and almost anywhere.
You always move up the mindfulness ladder
You have good days and then you have bad days. A few months down the line there will be one day when you feel like all your effort has gone waste and that you’re back at square one. Don’t fret it. This is not a race and there is no progression curve. It is a state of being.
Tough guys don’t meditate
Only monks meditate, right?! Arnold Schwarzenegger meditates. Enough said!
But all this is not something that can be told, you’ll have to give it a try yourself. I have used Let’s Meditate, Headspace, and Calm, and they have some really good free beginner lessons that you can start with (Let’s Meditate is free, not hidden costs).
Give it a try – 10 minutes every day for 10 days of guided meditation.