So I’ve done a few different guided meditations using The Heart Movement app at this point, and they’ve varied wildly in their levels of success. After my first morning attempt last week, I decided to try a 30-minute body scan at about 8pm a few days later and I just didn’t connect with it at all. It was hard to focus on the words being said, and even harder to draw my attention to specific parts of my body. My brain wanted stimulation, not stillness, so I turned it off after about five minutes.
I tried the same meditation again a few days later, first thing in the morning, and connected with it enough to finish the recording, even though my mind was still wandering throughout. I’m finding connecting to things easier first thing after I wake up, I think, so I’m trying to do them as early as possible.
Overall, I’ve been finding it hard to keep my attention focussed on parts of my body, until I tried a walking practice this morning, which I really connected with. It was only fifteen minutes of my hour long walk, but I found the way I was carrying myself changed straight away. My steps were slower and more controlled where I’d normally be stomping to get my heart rate up.
I’ve been finding it hard to keep my attention focussed on parts of my body, until I tried a walking practice this morning, which I really connected with.
I’m a really tactile person; I feel the texture of food in my mouth more than the taste, I hate slimy things and I find comfort in anything that clicks or has bumps on it. The walking practice drew my focus to the soles of my feet whilst I was on a chunky gravel path and it was both comforting and grounding to focus on that uneven, crumbling sensation beneath me. It was way easier to tune into something I could feel the texture of, as opposed to how different parts of my body were feeling, which is something I’ve spent a lot of time trying to ignore up until now. To pay attention to the way one part of me was interacting with something external felt more real to me than noticing how it was existing on its own.
This meditation was a really nice way to start the walk and changed the way I carried myself during and after. It took maybe ten minutes after I’d moved on to another podcast for me to notice myself settling back into my normal, stomping walk. My thoughts were still buzzing all over the place throughout the practice, but I found it was easier for me to reengage my attention by connecting with something external as opposed to something internal.
This is part 6 of a series entitled ‘A Sceptic’s guide to entering the World of Mindfulness’.