Friday, 7 September 2018

Sticking to your practice...

The folks at the Mindfulness Project blog posted some useful tips today on sticking to your practice... While this is framed for people who are into secular mindfulness practice that's usually taught & supported on formal eight-week courses, much of the advice is relevant to anyone who's trying to maintain a regular meditation practice.

Amongst other tips, they suggest:
  • Seek community: Well, of course I would point that one out! We meet every week on Wednesday evenings, and all are welcome (even if you've no experience of meditation... or even haven't been for a while!).
  • Start with small commitments: It's unlikely that you'll be able to dive into four hours a day of serene zazen! They remind us that "even small amounts of practice -- 5 minute bursts, for example -- are better than no practice at all". Often it's about finding space in your day for regular practice - early morning works best for most (not me!), last thing at night for others, or some regular time during the day. Establishing a dedicated space at home for your practice has helped many, too.
Mostly, though, I liked that title of the piece which used Sharon Salzberg's exhortation to "Just start over." Just start over every time you sit, and when you're seated, just start over every time you're distracted. And more fundamentally, start over with every breath, with every moment.