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why?

gottzigottzi Essex, UK New

Hello all,

I currently have very little spare time, what with work, family, walking the dogs etc, and I am only able to fit in a 15 minute session each morning after walking the dogs and before I make the kids lunches then go to work.
Is 15 minutes enough?
My other question is no matter whether I walk the dogs before or after meditation I find myself very drowsyand almost asleep.
Does anyone else have this issue, how should I resolve it or should I just observe it and keep trying?

With Metta

David

Comments

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    Meditate where you can. You can turn a lot of moments into brief mindfulness meditations, including making lunches, walking dogs, reading to kids, taking showers, even using the toilet, lol.

    That said, most of us have more time than we think, we just plan it poorly or don't prioritize. I get up early just so I can do yoga and meditate. It means a sacrifice in another area, but it is worth it. In my case, I go to bed earlier than my husband so I miss a little bit of time with him. But I am a better person, more engaged mom and wife as a result so it makes up for that time. I also found that talking to my family about how important it was to me helped them to support me so that I get what I need.

    If you are worried that your 15 minutes isn't enough, you are already sabotaging your efforts. Don't worry about the time on the clock. Just make the best of what you have available.

  • NirvanaNirvana aka BUBBA   `     `     ` `     ` Outa Range Fridays thru Sundays South Carolina, USA Veteran

    Hello, David!

    You can do Metta meditation while drowsy. Just start by spreading loving thoughts, starting from the love enthroned on your own heart. That should more likely waken you while sitting, rather than make you even sleepier.

    Unless you're thinking of the kind of "intelligence" in a computer or a robot, there is no such thing as bland consciousness. Consciousness is loving consciousness. Just as you cannot physically separate the heat and the light from the Sun's rays, you cannot remove the warmth from consciousness.

    Start with small steps and "Stop not until the Goal is reached." But always start with love.

    lobster
  • gottzigottzi Essex, UK New

    OK thanks karasti I've never thought about turning the chore of dog walking into meditation, and I certainly wouldn't be feeling drowsy, but how do I turn such as this into a meditation?

    David

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    mediation is bringing yourself back to right here, right now. Anything can be a practice in this, even sitting in traffic. Observing thoughts as they come and go and not following them. And when you notice you are of on a thought tangent, stopping it and coming back to here and now.

    It's funny how fast and how far our thoughts will take us. This morning I sat down on my cushion, I said my opening "prayer" and as soon as I corrected my posture, I thought "oh, my hip is tight, I need to focus on that in yoga later." and my thoughts ran off from there for like 5 minutes thinking about yoga and running and how I forgot to charge my gps watch etc. I was off and running in thoughts before my hands even hit my knees to meditate, LOL. Recognizing that process and short circuiting it is what helps to retrain our minds. You can do it in any situation. Just do what you are and doing and be conscious of your breath. Don't think about everything else.

  • gottzigottzi Essex, UK New

    OK karasti,
    mindfullness of dog walking it is first thing tomorrow then lol.
    I suppose just being mimdfull of here and now is the most important part

    And thank you Nirvana,
    I will attempt turn my drowsiness to Metta practice instead of scolding myself for it.

    with Metta
    David

  • In his book "24 hour mindfulness:how to be calmer and kinder in the midst of it all" Rohan Gunatillake gives plenty of tips for being mindful and/or meditating during a normal working day.
    I enjoyed it, even though putting it in practice is -as always- more difficult than just reading how to do it. :)

  • @gottzi said:> Does anyone else have this issue, how should I resolve it or should I just observe it and keep trying?

    As others have suggested, mindfulness is worth investigating. I used to live in Essex by way, I'm in Suffolk now. Are you in touch with any local Buddhist groups?

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    @gottzi said:
    OK karasti,
    mindfullness of dog walking it is first thing tomorrow then lol.
    I suppose just being mimdfull of here and now is the most important part

    And thank you Nirvana,
    I will attempt turn my drowsiness to Metta practice instead of scolding myself for it.

    with Metta
    David

    Are you able to get up 30 or 60 mins earlier in the morning? I always try and get up an hour or so before my kids to get a session in before they harass me. It is well worth it!

    karastiShoshin
  • Does anyone else have this issue, ...

    Hello <3
    Yes, I have had this. Extreme relaxation is often something the body does before sleeping. So when entering a relaxed mind state one can fall asleep. :)

    Hence 'walking dog mindful awareness of the breath' meditation ... ;)

  • gottzigottzi Essex, UK New

    Little Student, I now have it on my kindle thanks,

    Spiny Norman, yes we have a centre in Colchester run by the FWBO but again it's having the time to attend.

    Bunks, I am up at 6 anyway and the kids don't get up until 7 so it's not the kids that are the issue in the morning more the drowsiness, if I tried longer I'm sure I would be asleep.

    Lobster, do you think it will catch on Lol :)

    with mettta
    David

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    try doing some sun salutations before you meditate. Even 10 mins will get your blood flowing and wake you up. Turn on the lights. Go stand outside and face the sun (when it's up that early, lol) for a couple of minutes. Yoga is set up to prime meditation practice, actually. It is meant to prepare for meditation.

    lobstersova
  • personperson Don't believe everything you think 'Merica! Veteran
    edited February 2016

    Traditionally when trying to cultivate concentration if one develops excitation they say reflect on things which bring mind down, like death or suffering and if one develops lethargy they say reflect on things which bring the mind up like the preciousness of human life or one of the 4 immeasurables.

    If your practice is a beginner sort of breathing meditation then maybe trying a metta meditation or using a mantra to meditate, something that engages the mind, would be something to try.

    As for if 15 minutes is good, I'm in the camp that says its more important to be regular than it is to have long sessions. So even 5 minutes everyday is more beneficial than an hour once a week. Another option would be to find a couple minutes several times throughout the day to stop and focus on your breath.

    lobsterfedericaShoshin
  • @person said: Another option would be to find a couple minutes several times throughout the day to stop and focus on your breath.

    I think that's very beneficial, especially for beginners such as me, even if you have a more formal daily practice.

  • I find that walking can be quite meditative in its own right. Maybe consider practicing while you walk your dogs? Some type of mantra or koan practice might work.

    On the same note, there are other daily activities into which meditation may be incorporated. Driving on a highway, doing the dishes, taking a shower, for instance. It is harder but ultimately that is the whole point- be mindful and insightful in every day life to help all beings, right?

    As for 15 minutes of sitting practice, I think that is not insignificant. Usually I sit 30 but sometimes I am really tired after a long day and will do 15. As a result, I usually go to bed calmer, sleep better and am more available to those around me the day after :)

  • Dear Gottzi: When feeling drowsy in meditation, you can try a couple things. Inhaling deeply three times and holding the breath for three seconds (repeat as necessary). Scrunching up all the facial muscles tight and then releasing it. Opening the eyes really wide. Doing a bit of standing meditation. Or going and splashing cold water on the face and then returning to sit.

  • gottzigottzi Essex, UK New

    Thanks to all for your advice and input.
    I am blessed that the online Sangha is available for me.

    David

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    @gottzi said:
    Little Student, I now have it on my kindle thanks,

    Spiny Norman, yes we have a centre in Colchester run by the FWBO but again it's having the time to attend.

    Bunks, I am up at 6 anyway and the kids don't get up until 7 so it's not the kids that are the issue in the morning more the drowsiness, if I tried longer I'm sure I would be asleep.

    Lobster, do you think it will catch on Lol :)

    with mettta
    David

    Ah. Early morning drowsiness. That can be difficult. Personally I take No-Doz the moment I wake up then meditate around thirty minutes later when it's kicked in!

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    @Dhammika said:
    Dear Gottzi: When feeling drowsy in meditation, you can try a couple things. Inhaling deeply three times and holding the breath for three seconds (repeat as necessary). Scrunching up all the facial muscles tight and then releasing it. Opening the eyes really wide. Doing a bit of standing meditation. Or going and splashing cold water on the face and then returning to sit.

    Or caffeine :)

  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited February 2016

    Taking mindful coffee into meditation is not something I have done. However on occasion I have sat with and sipped every few minutes, green tea. This is a wonderful opportunity to bring attentive awareness into mindful tea drinking ... no reason it can not be done with coffee.

    The important thing is to ease into and find an ease in practice.

  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran
    edited February 2016

    Cut off the eyelids ...problem solved :lol: (Or you could just drink strong tea )

    "Bodhidharma went to a monastery in Luoyang, where he spent nine years staring at a cave wall in intense concentration. Still another states that, in a fit of anger after repeatedly falling asleep while attempting to practice meditation, he cut off his eyelids. (This is one reason why he was often portrayed in art with an intense wide-eyed stare.) Upon touching the ground, they sprung up as the first tea plant. The first two of these legends are like others that seem intended to offer instruction in religious truths or in the importance of concentration in religious practice. The third provided a folkloric basis for the traditional practice among Zen monks of drinking strong tea in order to stay awake during meditation. It also provided an account of the introduction of tea into East Asia."

    http://www.britannica.com/biography/Bodhidharma

    Bunks
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