Warning: The First 5 Minutes Of Meditation Are Torture
Have you ever heard, “Two minutes of meditation is enough”, especially for beginners or… “Just start with 5 minutes”?
Even cookies take longer to bake! Let’s get clear- 2-5 minutes is not enough. You want a nice golden cookie and dear baby Jesus I hope you’ve got more depth and attention span than a snickerdoodle.
Five minutes looks like:
“I forgot my mantra…”
“I must sit still…I must sit still…no, that’s not my mantra!”
While my body is as stiff as a board, I realize my jaw is tight. I loosen it.
I notice I’ve been squinting my eyes while they’re closed (is that even possible?).
In my head I’ve written ten blog posts, one to-do list, and two full length articles…just in the first five minutes! (Irony. I am more productive with my eyes closed.)
This is why I suggest starting with 12-20 minutes, once or twice a day.
Meditation is a magical journey, not a magic bullet.
If you think investing 5 minutes into your meditation practice (something that has the ability to change the way you do life) is enough then let me ask you if we all put 1/5 or 1/3 of ourselves into everything. Doctors would only invest 1/5 of their time in medical school! Maybe you’d like to take home 1/3 of your current paycheck. Of course not!
Go beyond the 5 minutes.
The first five minutes is an uncomfortable squirm-fest, and it’s still like that for me, especially if I’ve been busy lately. But once you get over the hump of resistance (I will probably never say that again) you’ll begin to sink into the feeling of meditation. You will have time to experiment with a few re-focusing/anchoring techniques- find what works for you. You will have time to fade in and out, separate from self/thoughts, which is good! You’ll have moments where your mind takes a backseat- you won’t get that in five minutes.
You can start your regular meditation with a five minute meditation like the free ones I offer. After the 5 minutes are up, shift into a regular meditation (mindfulness or mantra).
You can also make up your own five minute meditations that precede your regular meditation practice.
One I like is what I call- “Free to complain”. Sometimes we try hard NOT to complain or give a voice to our concerns. We shove it down. Instead, give yourself permission for the first 5 minutes of your meditation to host a complain-party. It’s like the first five minutes when you give your kid a chore they despise- it takes a few moments for them to accept it and submit to the task. Let your inner toddler throw a fit, gripe about your boss, your day, your kids, your luck, your aches and pains all while in meditation. Bitch, whine, and moan if you must. After a few minutes, you’ll tire of it- trust me. Then move right into a more peaceful meditation!
Another idea: “Welcome To The Party”
Click here for free 5 minute meditations to add to your routine: Free Meditations
Peace and Be Well