Like Brushing Your Teeth

When I first started my daily meditation practice it felt like a huge chore. Every day I needed to actively convince myself that my time on the pillow was well spent. There was a pattern to these distractions. Sometimes I would be rolling in the events of the day. Sometimes my mind would try to convince me to go complete unfinished tasks rather than sit. Sometimes I would be drowsy and just want to go to bed. These struggles seemed endless. In response to my struggles on old student told me, “At some point it will be like brushing your teeth. You think about it. You just do it.  Do you over think brushing your teeth?”

There was some serious wisdom in this silly metaphor. Instead of evaluating whether I should meditate each day I tried to have a strong determination to maintain a routine. I had found that I meditated best before I got involved with daily activities and that it was bad if I was tired so I committed to meditate immediately after waking up and immediately after returning home from work. I told myself that for one month I wouldn’t think about it, I would just do it. Slowly but surely meditation has become a part of my routine. I over think hobbies but I don’t over think routines. I just do them. I’m happy I made this transition successfully because meditation has helped me in so many ways. Maybe you should give it a try.

This entry was posted in Personal Experiences by Ryan Shelton. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ryan Shelton

While I'm currently married to a beautiful woman while teaching physics at Padua Academy, these descriptors fail to capture the totality of my adventurous life. I have hiked over 1700 miles, traveled to 5 continents, managed a bakery, started a meditation center, counseled troubled teens, attended Duke, UNC, and Harvard, protected forests as a wildland firefighter, volunteered thousands of hours with Americorps, rafted the Grand Canyon, SCUBA dived on the Great Barrier Reef, and continues to find new adventures. I hope my writing encourages you to pursue your dreams and be the best version of yourself while supporting your communities to work together to solve the current challenges in our world.

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