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How to Stop Thinking During Meditation: 10 Tips to Calm in 10 Minutes

A little secret is that we normally resist what's growth inducing. The resistance is actually a sign that we're near something that could be positively revolutionary for us! Try at least one tip below that you feel a strong aversion to. Try it out for a week and see what happens. You may be surprised!
01/18/2016 10:12am ET | Updated January 18, 2017
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Young woman doing meditation exercise on bed

Have you tried meditation only to get frustrated because you can't stop thinking or worrying?

Maybe you worry so much that you feel more stressed after meditation than when you began! If you struggle with constant thoughts during meditation, don't give up yet!

With these 10 tips, you'll get calm, clear and centered in 10 minutes.

These tips are simple but powerful to get your mind calm and clear. Pick a few or try them all at once. A little secret is that we normally resist what's growth inducing. The resistance is actually a sign that we're near something that could be positively revolutionary for us! Try at least one tip below that you feel a strong aversion to. Try it out for a week and see what happens. You may be surprised!

1. Start at the same time every day. It doesn't matter if you meditate for 2 minutes or 2 hours. We're going for a routine because it trains your brain to get into the meditation zone automatically. Pick a time of day that works for you and your lifestyle. You can always change your time but ideally you settle into a time that feels right. After a while, you'll even want to meditate at that time.

2. Choose your meditation zone. Meditate in the same place every day. This is another routine. Your subconscious mind will eventually associate your chosen meditation place with the act of meditating and your focus will automatically draw inward with peace.

3. Journal before you meditate. If you struggle with excessive worry during meditation, this is a game changer. Do a "stream of consciousness" by free writing whatever is on your mind at the moment. No need to edit or sensor your words. Write until you feel completely vented. By writing, you're detoxing repetitive thoughts from your mind so there's less emotional charge when you meditate. This creates a clear mental space.

4. Ask. When you close your eyes, mentally ask your body, mind, heart and spirit for whatever experience you'd most like to have in meditation. Speak to yourself in the way you'd speak to a child, sweet and kind. This immediately gets your subconscious mind aligned with your conscious intention.

5. Assume you're doing it right. When you find yourself wondering if you're doing it right, mentally respond with: "Yes! And I'm awesome!" you can even smile a little bit. This little mantra stops the self doubt that pulls you out of the present moment. And it's 100% true. If you're trying your best to focus, then you're doing it right and you are awesome.

6. Experiment with different styles. Investigate different teachers and styles to see what works best for you. There is no right way to meditate. There's only different techniques. Some techniques will get you into a calm and peaceful state more easily than others based on your mental and emotional makeup.

A secret to finding your ideal meditation style is to look at how you learn. If you learn best by watching, try meditations with visualization. If you learn best by listening to instructions, try mantra meditations. If you learn best kinesthetically, try body awareness meditations...and so on. The whole point is to find what works best for you and most easily connects you to your spirit.

7. Thank yourself. At the end of your meditation, place your hand on your heart and breath gratitude to your body, mind, heart and spirit for taking care of you. Take a few moments to open your eyes, look around and get up slowly. These few moments of transition help maintain your calm state as you move into the material world again.

8. Record
insights in your journal. Write down your experience immediately after meditating. Even if it doesn't seem completely logical in the moment, just write what comes to you. We access our subconscious mind and our higher Self when we meditate. By writing down insights, you're getting those precious messages from your divine Self. Look back at your journal after a few days or weeks - you'll be amazed at the wisdom there!

9. Join a community
. The energy of group meditations is powerful! Many people can more easily meditate in a group and often have a deeper experience then when they meditate alone. It's a great spiritual support system to meditate weekly with like minded friends. Check your local neighborhood for meetups, donation classes or organize your own meditation group with a few friends!

10. Connect with a teacher that you respect and trust. Meditation is an internal adventure but that doesn't mean you need to do it all on your own. Find at least one teacher who shares tips, information and inspiration. A good teacher will always direct you towards your internal guidance and intuition. A great teacher can lead you to a deeper experience of yourself when you feel stuck.

The benefits of mediation are instantaneous and build over time.

When you meditate, you're exploring a deeper experience of yourself. You're getting to know yourself intimately in a way you never have before. That can be exciting, scary, vulnerable and fun all at once! When you explore your own internal experience, you'll feel more peace, calm and clarity in all aspects of your life and relationships.

Now it's time for inspired action! Leave a comment below to let me know which of these tips you'll try today.

Wishing you an awesome meditation! Xoxo + Namaste yo!

~ Shawna