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Can a Busy Mind Meditate?

Can a Busy Mind Meditate?

It sure doesn’t feel like it. But of course that’s when I need to do it the most.

These days, when I sit to meditate my mind shifts into high gear. Things that haven’t worried me for weeks, are suddenly urgent. What? They’ve waited until I sit to meditate to become critical? Feels like it.

 

It feels like such a waste of time to just sit there. I’m anxious to get up and do things. Strangely enough, when I open my eyes, I never feel I’ve wasted the last twenty minutes! During meditation, time it feels like it is crawling! The day is getting away from me. Afterwards, I feel refreshed and happy I did it.

 

When life is stressful it’s even more important for me to meditate. Strangely, I find then is the hardest time to make myself do it. These days my life feels like the world has gone mad. No one is behaving as expected and problems are multiplying. I can’t fix these problems. They’re not mine. They belong to dear, loved ones. It feels like being at the scene of multiple accidents.

All I can do is double down on my self-care. Meditate as much as possible. Eat well and get lots of sleep. I play soothing music, light candles and try to get out in nature as much as possible.

 

What do you do to help soothe yourself during times of intense stress?

I’d love to hear your suggestions.

 

Style your day beautifully,

Jennifer

**Blab is a new, online video chat platform. Who comes up with names like this? Couldn’t they just have called the platform chatting?

Yesterday Pam and I blabbed hereWe talked about blogging and our Style Sweet Spot series with Elana Centor. It’s about 45 minutes of us chatting.

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33 Comments

  1. November 11, 2015 / 3:15 am

    Jennifer, I just want to tell you that I really enjoy reading your blog! Ironically, through you, I have discovered many other lovely blogs, which initially catch my attention and admiration — and I sometime sign up for them, but yours is the only one I read each time with genuine interest. I even watched your Blab show. You do a great job expressing what you want to say, and inspiring others to be more confident about expressing their own style. Thank you for this! Truly…. I look forward to whatever you have to offer in the future.
    All good things,
    Georgia

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:01 am

      Thanks so much Georgia. I’m so glad you thought the blab went well. I think we may start our own, shorter weekly blab to get the word out. I look forward to your column in my email box every Sunday morning!

  2. Karen
    November 11, 2015 / 3:39 am

    Good ideas! Try to eat right and stay hydrated!
    Karen

  3. November 11, 2015 / 4:10 am

    There’s a saying to meditate at least half an hour a day but if you’re really busy then an hour and half! I think just go with it BC stress and being tense may be needed for some situations and to be carefree doesn’t work at times. Deep breaths and a hot bath at night is sometimes all you can do. We can’t all be like the Dalai Lama

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:02 am

      I do a lot of deep breathing, because it distracts my busy mind and helps me calm down.Of course baths are the best!!

  4. November 11, 2015 / 4:14 am

    I have the same problem–monkey mind spinning out and over and around, a big distraction.

  5. November 11, 2015 / 4:31 am

    I try to meditate but am rubbish at it. It’s on the list for 2016 to dos. Have you read Dan Harris’s book 10% Happier? He’s a busy mind meditator.

    • LoriM
      November 11, 2015 / 9:02 am

      Oh my goodness, I’ve just been discussing this exact issue with my mom, who has ALWAYS been a meditation kind of person and has ALWAYS been telling me to SLOW.DOWN. I’m 56 and she’s 82!

      This morning during my (supposed to be) meditation time – I read Dan’s book!! Can’t wait to hear his take. And yes, ok, I’ll work on the quietness without books about how to be quiet, too.

      I told my mom, when I’m quiet, my mind rushes in with all kinds of anxieties and distractions. Ugh. Seems better to just keep reading, watching, listening, surfing. But I know it’s not.

      • Jennifer
        Author
        November 13, 2015 / 9:04 am

        I remember Deepak saying at a seminar, “so you have thoughts interrupt your meditation? Congratulations, you are alive” I keep trying not to try.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:05 am

      I haven’t read that Jen, I’ll look for it!

  6. November 11, 2015 / 5:23 am

    I am with you on all of the above. Just as one crisis seems settled another one comes along, a bit like buses. I meditate at least once a day and if possible twice. It is one of the things that keeps me vaguely sane.

  7. November 11, 2015 / 5:52 am

    I’m sad to say I will often eat chocolate. I know that it is counterproductive but somehow that silky smooth feeling on my tongue will make the world disappear, if just for a moment.

    I’ve also come to love yoga. Going through the breathing and mindful poses seems to focus my mind without even really trying.

    bisous
    Suzanne

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:06 am

      Yoga and chocolate! You are one smart cookie! I can’t do yoga with my hip yet, but I can eat chcocolate 🙂

  8. April, styleblancetnoir
    November 11, 2015 / 7:34 am

    Since I’m a designer, my mind is going 60 miles an hour most days. (Okay, slight exaggeration here!) I’m also an early riser, getting up around 5:30-6am most days, a life long habit. This means that by 3pm, I’m physically and mentally tired. That’s when I need to meditate, but when I do, I keel over and take a nap, instead!

    The only way I can successfully meditate and ‘turn off’ is when I visit a local Japanese Zen garden. The garden is so spiritual, my mind just naturally slows down, and I fall into a calm, peaceful place. Meditation doesn’t have to be in a dark, quiet room somewhere. Go to a park or local woodland and Mother Nature does the rest.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:07 am

      I agree. My best meditiations happen when I’m out in majestic nature!

  9. November 11, 2015 / 8:51 am

    I want to KNOW WHAT YOU think about when you meditate!Or do you not think of anything?Started to watch the VIDEO but must get out the door soon.YOU DID very well those first few questions…………….I must finish cause WHERE’s PAM had not surfaced yet!!!
    SORRY To hear there is STUFF going on!!!
    XX

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:09 am

      I think my mantra and attempt to reach the gap between my thoughts. Quieting my thoughts and not obsessing.

  10. wendymm
    November 11, 2015 / 9:17 am

    I have been meditating for three years now and it has helped. I did have a terrible black period in the Spring, but the meditation helped as did reading some really inspiring things that told me to a) let go what wasn’t mine and b) recognize that I can make mistakes, but I am not my mistakes. Now I apply that to others as well and it makes me a whole lot happier! Sending you love and peace! xoxo

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:11 am

      Thanks Wendy! Yes letting go of what is not my problem is so helpful. I go back and forth as I am a work in progress. Always. XX

  11. November 11, 2015 / 11:43 am

    I am trying to really take it down a notch, slow down, enjoy, more, I am not meditating as such;however I know that I need to, so thank you for the encouragement, Jennifer….

    xoxo
    Karena
    The Arts by Karena
    Artist Sandra Goroff

  12. Susie
    November 11, 2015 / 5:00 pm

    I am not very good with quieting my mind during meditation, and sometimes it seems to cause me stress to try to be still and meditate.

    Doing easy work in my flower beds, planting or harvesting herbs, and petting, brushing, or playing with my little dog are great stress relievers for me.

    You did great on the “Blab” video. It was nice to see you and hear the actual voice of “A Well Styled Life”.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:13 am

      Those are all great ones Susie! My little dog is a sweet darling and she lifts my spirits all the time.
      We are planning to start our own blab very soon. It will be shorter than this one but hopefuly entertaining and helpful. Stay tuned:)

  13. November 11, 2015 / 5:06 pm

    Belleruth Naperstek, the founding mother of Guided Imagery… Her meditation audios have guided me through breast cancer surgeries, chemotherapy, James’s death and major stress. Download them to your iPad. Don’t know what I’d do without her. xoxo, Brenda

  14. Judy Heyman
    November 11, 2015 / 8:08 pm

    I have been doing Deepak Chopra meditations on and off for about two years. Recent family stress has me back doing every day, first thing when I wake up, even before my coffee. I love this and found it really helps me. There is a Montrachet I say with each day’s meditation, my mind does wander but I always go back to the Montra of the day.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:16 am

      That’s the way Judy! I’m doing ther 21 day meditation challenge in addition to my regular practice. Deepak is a brilliant man. Having attended his seminars, I feel like he’s a pal 🙂

  15. November 12, 2015 / 6:55 am

    I’ve never been good at meditation – it’s not easy for me to stop my mind from working. A nice walk or a good book can relieve my stress!

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:17 am

      Walking always does. Just getting out in fresh air. I need some new good books to read and escape into.

  16. November 12, 2015 / 7:33 am

    When it’s time to meditate, what I call my Monkey Mind shows up, and begins chattering. I totally relate.

  17. Nancy
    November 12, 2015 / 3:45 pm

    I start the morning, usually 6:00-6:30 a.m. while my husband sleeps and read the daily inspiration from the book Jesus Calling. It helps me focus on the Lord. It’s a wonderful book and draws my attention to what is really importantin life.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:20 am

      That’s a wonderful source of inspiration Nancy!

  18. November 12, 2015 / 7:22 pm

    I so wish I was able to meditate without all sorts of random thoughts crowding in and ruining things. Seems as though I’m not alone with that problem, though! For me a good stress-reliever (and form of meditation, really) is drawing.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      November 13, 2015 / 9:21 am

      Drawing! What a great idea. I bet you get lost in the process, which would calm your mind!

  19. November 13, 2015 / 4:28 pm

    I can’t meditate (i.e., empty out my mind). I simply refocus my attention. Music is my salvation. Oddly enough, this French-American girl always goes for German composers (Wagner or Strauss) if she wants to be uplifted and transported. Both composers seem to have a special affinity for women in their music. It’s positively transcendental for me. Oh, and a scented candle, too.

    Thought-provoking post, my dear friend.

    Cheers, M-T

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