Getting it right

The way we approach our meditation will reflect the way we approach life. There are so many misconceptions about what meditation is, or isn’t, and what we’re supposed to be doing, or not doing, whilst sitting with our eyes closed. So this is the place to discuss our view, our attitude and motivations - how and why we’re getting some Headspace.

Getting it right

by meditator-3BYQK1 » Mon Aug 17, 2015 9:58 am

I am becoming more aware of an aspect of myself that is making meditation and mindfulness difficult and and that is my need to "get it right". I have had a vague awareness of this approach to life for a while but now it is becoming more apparent in my practice and is causing problems.

I have been following the Self-esteem pack and Andy's instructions to refine the attention on the breath by focusing on the beginning, end and space in between. I had been focusing on the rise and fall of either the chest or shoulders, whichever was more apparent at that sitting. But then, I think as a consequence of becoming more focused on the breath, I became aware of first my stomach rising and then my chest and started following this. Almost immediately a thought arose that this was the wrong way to focus. This idea came from a book on mindfulness that I had been reading which encourages the sitter to focus on the breath entering the nostrils. The author says it is important to find a single point to focus on otherwise we will be "eternally chasing after the breath" through the body.

Once this thought had arisen its effects stayed with me and I began to tense my neck and face as the feeling that I was getting it wrong stayed with me. This affected the rest of my meditation and now I am worried I won't be able to let go of it when I sit again.

This notion of getting it right has caused me tension and pain during the day when I attempt to be mindful. I find myself searching for the "right thing" to focus my attention on and when I can't find it the same tension and pain develops in my neck.

How can I change this attitude? How can I let go of trying to "get it right"?
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