I meditated for the first time yesterday. It was weird. Really good in the end, but definitely weird and not as easy as I thought it would be.
I found an article online on Zen meditation, or Zazen as it is called, and followed the instructions word for word. I was told to sit with my legs crossed, Indian-style (I hope that’s not racially derogatory in any way) and then to think of nothing for 15 minutes. After about a minute, all I could think about was the throbbing pain in my knees.
So I switched positions, to a chair that could support my back. Reset the timer. And sat there, counting my breaths, inhaling puffing my stomach out. And exhaling while bringing it in. There had to be ten times when I thought that I should check the clock because my timer on my phone must have been broken. There were three times I thought about just giving up.
When the timer went off, I sat there for an additional ten seconds — at peace.
I honestly wouldn’t know what to think of it, if you asked me about the experience on its own. But I worked the rest of the day, with a very clear mind. It helped me focus better. It helped me be more creative. It helped productivity overall. I’m assuming the better I get at meditation, the more powerful it will be.
Granted, I’m the kind of person that if you tell me I look sick, I’ll wake up the next day with a cough or cold. If you tell me that drinking caffeine an hour before taking a test helps me remember better, I will drink caffeine and then remember better. So when people tell me that meditation helps with clarity of thought, and creativity, and focus, and productivity, and then I meditate…it is no surprise that I feel that way.
But in the end, the goal was to feel that way…so mission accomplished.
I’m going to try to meditate every day. If I can’t find fifteen minutes of peace for something that makes me work better, faster and smarter, for something that supposedly gets rid of my internal dialog, then I am an idiot.
For those interested, I found instructions for beginner Zen meditation here: http://www.mro.org/zmm/teachings/meditation.php