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Discussion in 'START HERE: Registration & Introductions' started by gryph, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. gryph

    gryph Member

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    Hello everyone, new to these forums and just started trying out meditation last week. I am hoping it can help me deal with stress and depression.

    In a nut shell, for the last 3 years my life has been a series of disasters. I won't bore you all with the details, but it has put me in financial and emotional distress. I consider myself a strong person, but over the last 3 months I have found myself in a downward spiral. I've lost my sense of purpose and direction in life, and I want it back. I have not been able to turn off my thoughts, and all of them have been negative. As a result, it's been a period of insomnia, depression, and ennui. The stress has also lead to an ulcer.

    I downloaded the Lifeflow demo and have been using it once or twice a day. It is still difficult to clear the negativity out of my head, but it does seem to give me a brief respite from the torment. I am hoping it gets easier with "practice" and I intend to stick with it since, frankly, nothing else has worked.

    It is all new to me, so for now I have been keeping it simple. While listening to the track I concentrate on my breathing. While breathing in I try to think of positive things (love, peace, happiness, etc.) and breathing out I visualize a black cloud of stress, tension, and negativity flowing out of me.

    It does appear to help some even though I've only been at it a very short while. Looking forward to any tips or suggestions on how to enhance my results and continue on a positive path. Thank you all in advance.
     
  2. pollyanna

    pollyanna Moderator

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    Hi gryph and welcome to the community :)

    a little daily practise is the key. You can also download "Discover Meditation" from the top left of the forum - it's free and it has helped many people here. Look forward to hearing how you progress and wish you much peace and joy :) :) :)
     
  3. gryph

    gryph Member

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    Thanks Polly. Started the Discover Meditation course this morning. A few things I've noticed so far:

    I like to read for relaxation, and it had gotten to the point where I would read the same page (or sentence even) over and over because my thoughts were intruding on my ability to concentrate. I am already finding that I can enjoy reading again more and better absorb the content.

    My moods are still quite up and down, but at least now there are some ups again instead of all downs.

    I am sleeping a little better. Still not through the night, but longer stretches that seem more restful mentally and physically.

    Rome wasn't built in a day, and I expect it will take time, but so far it is encouraging. After all it took a long time to get as far down as I did. I only wish I had started this process sooner, but no time like the present!
     
  4. pollyanna

    pollyanna Moderator

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    That's really good to hear gryph :) Once you decide which meditation technique you are going to use and feel comfortable with, you will be able to practise while playing the demo.

    Also, when you come accross the recomendation to do the gratitude exercise on C.D.2 of Discover Meditation I cannot recommend enough that you do this and create the daily habit of it. Over time, I believe it is very powerful and will be of great help to you.

    Here is what a lovely member posted sometime ago about finding her sense of purpose with LifeFlow - thought you may find it interesting:-

    "Hello. I have been doing Life Flow for just over one year - going slow - on track #2 now. When I started, I was in transition but had a clear intention of the direction I wanted to go in and I feel that Life Flow is a powerful tool that supported my intention to change and made it possible to follow through - change of job, closer relationships, and opportunities for ongoing growth and development - all of which happened!! What I value most now, is a deep-rooted sense of purpose. You can read the whole post by clicking on the link below...

    http://www.project-meditation.org/c...st-precious-gift-sense-purpose.html#post18931

    Hope this helps and wish you much peace and joy :) :) :)
     
  5. gryph

    gryph Member

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    Thanks again, I appreciate the support and guidance :)

    A couple newbie questions if you all don't mind:

    Is it important to be consistent with a mantra? I've sort of been skipping around on that. Not sure f I should be looking for one that works or switching it up to suit how I feel that day. I'll often start with one and during a session another will pop into my mind and take over, so to speak.

    I've noticed that as I meditate a lot of the time my eyeballs twitch for a while. Is this normal? Is it waking REMs? Is it beneficial? It can be a bit distracting, maybe it will pass as I get more experience under my belt.

    I started a physical regimen around the same time I started meditating, weights, power walks, and a lot of stretching. It seems to help as a distraction if I am idle and my mind starts to spin out with negative thoughts between meditations. It also is positive for my self image, it's accomplishing something (however small) beneficial rather than stewing on problems. The physical and mental exercises are sort of a separate thing, should I be looking for a way to integrate the two?
     
  6. gryph

    gryph Member

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    Just had an interesting experience I'd like to share. I was having a rough time clearing my head today, thoughts would not subside. On top of that I forgot to shut off the phone and it rang several minutes in. I opened my eyes just enough to shut the ringer off and tried to go back in even though I figured it was a lost cause.

    Then, Bruce Lee's "be like water" quote came to my mind. I went with it and visualized myself as a single molecule of water flowing down a stream. That thought expanded and I became the stream. I stayed with it, becoming a large river, the ocean, the earth itself and everything on it. It went further, I became the solar system, the universe, everything. It was a very strange and profound feeling, I actually started crying though I felt neither sadness or joy. The tears were a totally involuntary reaction just as I was ending the meditation.

    So, I have no idea what just happened. I had thought I wasn't going to have any success today, but suddenly it changed and became something I have never experienced before.

    I guess the lesson here is to stick with it even when it seems to be not working for me. Seems like a good lesson to apply to life in general as well as meditation.

    Thanks for reading :)
     
  7. pollyanna

    pollyanna Moderator

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    Hi gryph,

    Here's a piece from "The Principles or Meditation and Entrainment"...

    "Each of us is unique, and what works well for me might be totally useless to you. Generically speaking, there are three types of meditation techniques. There are techniques that take your awareness outwards, techniques that take your awareness inwards, and techniques that do a little of both. People with exceptionally busy minds tend to do better with techniques that take awareness outwards since their minds naturally head that direction anyway. People with more contemplative natures tend to do better with techniques that take you inwards. The combination techniques are a “maybe” for just about anyone, but are usually best used when a person has some experience with meditation under their belt.

    The mantra technique as taught by Michael at Project Meditation is an excellent example of an outward technique. Since the vast majority of people have somewhat active minds, this mantra technique is a good bet for most of us. Even mantra techniques have some differences. Some require rigid concentration while others are more relaxed, such as Michael’s technique. There are some that use chanting which is helpful for a person whose mind is hyperactive. The exact technique that will be right for you is something you have to discover for yourself."

    If you want to read all the principles please click on the link below...

    http://www.project-meditation.org/c...nciples-meditation-entrainment.html#post12298

    I think it's great that you have started a physical regimen also and I think it's absolutely fine to keep them separate.

    And yes, I believe it's best to just go into meditation without expectations. The key is consistency. Meditation is cumulative and I look forward to hearing how you are soon enjoying an assortment of benefits.

    Hope this helps and wish you much peace and joy :) :) :)
     
  8. gryph

    gryph Member

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    Wow, that link was exceptionally helpful. Answered a lot of the questions I have and even explained why I am having them. I'd recommend anyone starting out read the entire thing. I found myself nodding along as I read it, recognizing many things that are exactly associated with where I'm at and what I am experiencing. Since "over-thinking" is one of my problems I've tried to sort of dive in without thinking too much about the why and how... but my curious nature has lead me there anyway. I've tried to take the stance that "if it seems to be working that is enough, don't worry about the ways and means." Reading this has satisfied my innate curiosity AND left intact my desire to concentrate on getting there without over-thinking how I'm getting there. Great stuff :)

    http://www.project-meditation.org/c...nciples-meditation-entrainment.html#post12298

     
  9. pollyanna

    pollyanna Moderator

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    Glad you found the link exceptionally helpful gryph and I agree, it's a great thread for anyone starting out. Wishing you continued peace and joy :) :) :)
     

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