How to Make Meditation a Habit
Make a Commitment to the Practice
If you've started to meditate for a week or more you already know it isn't easy! Between sore knees and sore egos keeping on track can easily waiver.
That's why I want you to make a commitment right now.
Commit to yourself.
My meditation teacher often says, "meditation is mind's gift to itself."
Truer words have never been spoken.
Many Buddhist refer to meditating as practice.
But if you're doing an action, why is it practice? Because in Buddhism, every time you meditate, you are practicing at being a Buddha.
The same is with meditation.
Every time you sit and meditate, you are practicing at being your best self. Daring to imagine yourself without limiting ideas, difficulties or all that noise in your head that keeps you from appreciating every moment of your life.
Until it's as true as breathing.
That you've practiced at being your ideal you so often that there really is no difference. Your inner world is so open and full of possibilities that everything is meaningful.
I honestly believe that one of the greatest gifts we can give the world is a stable mind and this is my gift to you.
Bringing The Practice into Daily Life
Do you know where your awareness is?
Meditation is primarily meant to develop awareness.
Developing that keen sense of how things are. Our view of the world no longer being clouded by our disturbances and funny ideas.
Just a clear awareness that radiates joy ...
on the good days.
While the above is true, it takes a lot of practice to recognize our own mind and everyone else's in its ideal state. That's why it's so important to bring your meditation into your daily life.
Why limit your practice to the twenty minutes on the cushion?
Especially when you have twenty-three hours and forty minutes left in the day!
The trick is to try and extend that centered feeling you had in meditation and stretch it out afterward. Holding a clear view in every thought, word and action as you move through the world.
Just like we talked about dropping thoughts and distractions during meditation and re-centering your mind.
Do the same throughout the day.
As the stress rises, the to-do list stretches and a co-worker ate your lunch again -- just bring your awareness back.
Back to your center point.
Feel the air at your nose coming and going.
Remember, your nature is this always centered, stable and joyful.
Then go back into the world with a clearer view and hopefully a bigger smile.
Take 2-Minutes to Create a New Habit
I think the biggest challenge when trying to do something good for myself is ... doing something good for myself!
Creating a new habit can be so difficult!
Like going to the gym or anything else, the benefit comes from continued action.
One of the most powerful methods I've ever used is from the book, "The Power of Habit."
The basic idea of how to most easily create a new habit is to hijack our pre-existing habit loops.
The Habit Loop
QUE - The trigger that starts you on your routine.
ROUTINE - The action you repeatedly do.
REWARD - The pleasurable reinforcement of the habit.
By understanding your own habit loops you can use this new found awareness to start meditating every day.
Let's say that every time you see a political post on Facebook you don't like, you immediately click that angry face, then reward yourself with a cat video.
Take the same loop and remove the angry face.
Add a quick two-minute meditation.
Hello, new habit!
At the end of the day, we all want to be happy. So, we should use every tool we have to make that happen!