As for meditation, recognizing negative thoughts and feelings is a normal, important part of mindfulness. Mindfulness isn't about not ever having negative thoughts or emotions, it's about being able to recognize those negative thoughts and emotions without letting them take over the moment for you. The analogy I've heard many Mindfulness experts use is your mind is the blue sky and your thoughts/emotions are the clouds. Light fluffy clouds are happy thoughts, dark clouds are negative ones and sometimes there are so many dark clouds a storm forms so we can no longer see the blue sky, but it's always there. It's just waiting on us to be able to recognize those negative thoughts and emotions without ruminating on them.
Mindfulness is a skill and it needs to be practiced in order for it to work. It's normal to struggle with drifting off into thought at first, you just have to keep practicing until you begin to learn how to recognize thoughts and emotions without ruminating on them. It's also important to note that "peace and quiet" isn't the goal of meditation. It can be a nice byproduct of meditation, but the ultimate goal of meditation is to live in the present the rest of the day. If you are worried about the past or the future then you can't be aware of the present and the present is all we have when you think about it. The more you are able to live in the present the easier it will be for you to experience moments of happiness when they come along and deal with problems when they inevitably arise because you aren't held hostage by your emotions.
When you are meditating and you find yourself drifting off into thought then focus on your breathing. Breathe in your nose and out of your mouth counting each breathe. Count one as you inhale deeply through your nose then count two as you exhale completely through your mouth. Do this up to a count of ten then start over. If you find yourself drifting away in thought again (positive or negative) then simply return to counting your breath again.
However, if you are so clinically depressed that you can't do this because your brain chemistry is making you ruminate on unhealthy thoughts then meditation isn't going to be very helpful until you address your mental health with a professional. Again, I would highly recommend Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in conjunction with a combination of medications. Studies have shown that a combination of medications works better than a single medication for practically all mood disorders and cognitive behavioral therapy is the most studied form of treatment for a variety of mental health issues and it works if you are willing to to put in the time and effort.
1. Find a positive (but real) mantra to focus your meditation: Something like "I am strong" or "I am relentless" or "I am willing to find happiness".
2. Try guided meditations. There are lots of apps for that, but also consider guided meditations in a group setting like yoga class to practice your meditation skills and not feel so alone.
3. Try movement focused meditation, like walking mediation.
4. Don't be too hard on yourself if meditation isn't working for you at this point in your life.
named what is coming up for you, then focusing your attention back to your breath. Every time this happens, being kind to yourself, knowing it is a natural thing to feel, and coming back to the focus of the meditation. Also, in realising that the words "I am sad", "I am depressed" means that you associate your identity with the emotion. Here, you have very little control to change things. However, when you can make the mental shift to: "I am experiencing sadness", "this emotion is that I feel depressed", you can know that these are states that can change, as our emotions and thoughts change all the time. In understanding this, you can more easily make the shift to regulating and processing these emotions, to change mental states or deal better with the situation.
The only internal solution I found was to concentrate on the physical feeling and understand and live with that feeling but disconnect that feeling from any mental association. This process is described in the book called the happiness trap. Also faking it till you make it can be applied to happiness. Laughing makes you happier
Then I meditate though I need guided meditation because my attention is so hard to control I need the external prompt or I find myself waaaaay off on my mental garden path.
My instinct with the sadness would be to get support with engaging with it. Best of luck x
I think your mind is simply wanting to be heard, and wrestling with it is like trying to pull a stick from a dog, the tug of war is telling your mind that this feeling is worth worrying about, and that it is a true reflection of danger in the outside world… I think the meditationa can explain much better than me. I hope you give them a listen and they help you. Remember: you're not alone, many people suffer with these problems. If you need to vent, my email is [email protected] take care!
I think of how I am valued by others and how they express it. I can then think of how I value myself and how I express it. Those two may be different, but they are both valid. I have to actively think positively and over power rhe negative. I hope some of this helps.
Secondly, joining a meditation group or course will help learn more about the intricacies of your practice & how normal it is for our brains to constantly have thoughts good or bad during our practice.
I found that really freeing today and thank all keep doing that during my meditation. Hopefully this helped.
something else that helps me with these thoughts is asking the little inside voice what they're trying to protect me from with these mean thoughts