I tried to meditate. It just didn’t work for me.
I wanted it to work. The thing is, I wanted it to work too badly. I forced it. Meditation is like butt-stuff, you can’t force butt-stuff. Because obviously. It has to happen organically and both parties (yourself and your soul) have to be on board.
I have written about information overload before. There is just too much info and ‘hacking’ advice on the interwebz. It’s too difficult to keep up. Anyway, I was reading about all of these great minds and successful people who meditate daily. Some do it as soon as they rise. Others, throughout the day. I decided to give it a shot.
First, I had to figure out the logistics. I decided I would meditate at night and I would do a silent meditation. I’m not sure if that is really what it is called but basically I would sit and focus on breathing and not let any thoughts enter my ADD riddled brain. Sit, breath, and think about breathing. That was difficult for me. I couldn’t meditate in the morning because my Dog has his own morning ritual. He smokes crack. Not really, PETA. He is just REALLY excited and wide-thefrick-awake in the morning. Meditation isn’t exactly relaxing when a dog is jumping on you and licking your nose. It just isn’t. In fact, it’s the opposite.
So I decided to meditate at night. I have a tranquil pond in my house with candles, Chamomile and Koi. Perfect. Except that is a lie. I didn’t have that. I had a cramped apartment bathroom floor. I could have meditated in the living room or something but I was embarrassed that I was starting this ritual and again, the dog. Let me tell you, while I WAS able to get through the practice, it wasn’t exactly productive. So I changed my plan.
Instead of the meditating at night, I would find time in the morning. And instead of a silent meditation, I gave guided practice apps a try, with headphones. Again, fail. See, when you decide to add another ritual to your already stressful morning, without rising earlier, it is NOT a recipe for success. Nope. I felt rushed, pissed and not even a little Zen.
Thus, my meditating days were finished.
I’m not ruling out meditation forever. I think it is fantastic and very helpful. Let me reiterate, I want to practice meditation. I do. I just don’t want it to become another thing that I feel I need to do and therefore get stressed out about.
The solution was simple. I meditate in other ways. Now, hardcore practitioners of meditation will most likely say something like, “Yo, Chris, my dawg, only meditation is meditation.” And they are probably right. But to me, anything that makes you feel happy and at peace, is meditation.
So here are my methods of meditation:
Walking is like, my shit. I love it. Grab the dog, go outside, walk. It’s pretty easy. Feel the fresh air. Breath in awesomeness, breath out not-so-awesomeness. I wish I had more time to just get lost somewhere and walk around.
Because confidence. Basically, to me meditation should be empowering and energizing, along with relaxing. Training is all of this. Be honest, tell me you don’t love the way you look when you walk past a mirror during a gunz pump session. If you don’t, you aren’t doing it right. Training makes you feel better. Really, it makes everything better. Training promotes confidence, positive body-image (most of the time), charisma, and character. Challenge: hit a huge new Deadlift PR or beat your record time in a 5k and tell me you don’t feel GREAT.
I had bad anxiety for a while. Really, one of the only things that made me feel better was writing. I would journal about everything. My wins, problems, weekend, day, whatever. I just wrote. It became my happy place. From that, I learned that I am decent at it. And that makes me like it even more. Try this if there is something you need to get off your chest. Write it down, whether it is a message to someone else or to yourself. Then crumple it up and throw it away. It works for me every time.
‘Get lost in a book’ is a phrase for a reason. You can magically transform into James Bond, sitting across from Le Chiffre at ‘Casino Royale’ in Montenegro. You can even be Christian Grey, which sounds kinda fun. Or, of course, Ana Steele, for the ladies.
This one is really neat. It releases all kinds of fun chemicals to the body and typically makes you feel pretty damn good after. Plus, it really only takes about 30 seconds. What? Am I the only one?
Go find your happy place. And thank you for helping me find mine.