There is a saying that meditation is good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end.
However, I feel it is more like there is resistance in the beginning, resistance later on, and resistance even later on.
I often get clients and people who reach out to me about how they would love to have a meditation practice, but have resistance around it even though they know it is good for them. There is resistance because it is good for them!
I hope to help normalize the resistance because I hear it a lot in private, but I don’t hear it talked about a lot. I think that people think meditation teachers don’t experience resistance. I do meditate every day, but there have been times when that has not been the case and I have experienced so much of my own resistance. It has been worth it to work through the resistance.
The Misconception that You Have to Clear Your Mind
One of the leading causes to resistance is the belief that we are not good at meditation or cannot clear the mind. The instructions for meditation sound simple enough until you try it. There is resistance that pops up when we realize it’s not so simple and might actually take practice. We doubt it we are doing it right or if it is even something that is possible for us.
People often think that my meditation practice is one of complete bliss or a complete clearing of the mind. I have learned to access the bliss field, how to concentrate my mind, how to let go and distress (all things I teach in my meditation class, Meditate to Achieve), but every sitting is not comfortable and I have many thoughts going through my mind at any given time just like anyone else.
There is no perfect experience and no perfect way, yet every experience is perfect because it is always yours. Thoughts are normal during meditation and completely welcome.
Resistance to Change and the Ego
Then there is the fact that even though deep down we want insight, there is resistance to change. The ego wants to hold on to it’s current view of the world and really doesn’t want you to challenge that view.
We can have a conscious intention, but the subconscious has another plan.
We want to be good students, but this may not be serving us. We are told that meditation allows us to be nonreactive or that we should be nonreactive in meditation, but then something unpleasable pops up. Daily practice is not always perfect and it is okay to show yourself grace.
Resistance is the mind’s attempt to control and redirect. Have you ever noticed how important little things that never mattered before become when your trying to make time for a practice?
Support When Learning
In the beginning, I learned from a group. I went to weekly group meditations and this was my practice at first. It was super uncomfortable. If I hadn’t been with a group, I would have given up after probably about 30 seconds.
Reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in joining a weekly meditation group or need support.
Deann Rae Jensen