Day 1 – The Bad Buddhist and the Nose Whistles

Day one of the challenge complete! I sat down to do my daily challenge late last night, so I’m posting this on Day Two. Hopefully, by the end of the challenge, I’ll be posting these on the same day. But, with work and grad school, I wouldn’t hold my breath. And speaking of breath!

Day One was your standard intro to meditation session. Breath in. Breath out. Wax on. Wax off. But there’s a reason for going back to the classics; they’re the foundation atop all else is built. I’ve gone back to these basics regularly for the last 11 or 12 years that I have been practicing meditation.

Now, I think this is a good place for me to pause and drop some honesty on Y’all. I’m a Bad Buddhist. Or for those who don’t truck with Buddha, I’m a Bad Meditator/Mindfulness-Person(?)/Whatever-Ya-Call-It. I’ve never, in the more than decade I’ve been attempting mindfulness, gotten passed the breathing stage. I’ve never been able to reach some mythological, One With The Force, thoughtless deep meditative state. I’m still stuck on Day One. Breath in. Breath out. Wax on. Wax off.

The reason I’ve never progressed in my mindfulness practice is because I DON’T PRACTICE. I’ve always been inconsistent. I lack discipline. Every few months, or so, I’ll get a wild hair up my but and sit down to give it a go. I’ll close my eyes. I’ll breathe. And I’ll think about my breath, my posture, my back, my family who could bust in at any moment and tease me, back to my breath, the whistling sound of air coming in and out of my nose. Why the hell is my nose whistling. It’s quite annoying. Oh, yeah, and back to my breath.

So, I get stuck in a cycle of unproductive meditation sessions and zero mindfulness activity. But what about all the time I spend thinking about my mindfulness? Does that count. I always intend to practice. Some days, I’ll sit and visualize my practice. I’m a daydreamer, so I do this a lot; often losing a lot of precious study time to these moments. Well, I’m breathing and letting all other thoughts go. What the heck, I’ll put those moments on the board.

We don’t have to feel bad about not staying consistent or not making much progress in our mindfulness journies. All we have to do is go back to the classics. Breath in. Breath out. Wax on. Wax off.

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