It’s no secret that I’ve got serious anxiety issues. That’s been established for a long time, which is why I’ve been a chronic self medicator up until very recently (and it can be argued that I still am, only my medication is hours of low effort exercise). I suppose everybody self medicates with something, but to what extent and whether or not it’s healthy is debatable. There’s no debate with my self medication. It was pure insanity.
But back to my anxiety. I tried every imaginable remedy to “cure” my ailment, and my anxiety was debilitating, paranoid, “can’t get out of bed” type of anxiety. Nothing really worked until I worked to improve my mind and spirit. Part of this improvement included (among a lot of outside help) the incorporation of meditation into my daily life.
I had tried meditation in the past, and what I couldn’t overcome was the fact that I couldn’t fully rest my mind. I felt I was a failure at it, and so I quit, like many of us do. Here were some of the reasons I didn’t “get” meditation.
- I couldn’t find that true enlightenment that you think a Buddhist monk at the top of a mountain must have from years of practice. The inner peace that acts as a brick wall between you and your problems.
- I couldn’t get my mind to shut up! I felt that if I could accomplish this, I would be able to have control over my thoughts.
- I thought I could have some out of body experience where I would be able to look at myself meditating from above myself. I don’t know why I wanted this to happen, but I’d read it in a book once and I thought it would be pretty cool. Needless to say it never did.
- After a while of being frustrated with the actual practice of failing to shut down my mind, it became more of a burden to meditate.
- I wasn’t comfortable sitting cross legged on the floor with my back straight.
- I wasn’t a hippie
- I didn’t have my own room specially designed for meditation, complete with a picture of Buddha, a bunch of candles, and some Enya music in the background.
- I got really bored.
- I didn’t want to wake up early
- I felt like a failure because of all of the above.