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    How can I stop wandering thoughts?


    I find that during meditation and prayer my mind wanders and its hard to stay on track. A 5 minute mediation turns into 15 minutes because it takes me so long to refocus and clear my mind. Even during conversations with people I find myself thinking about all the things I need to do rather than being present

    9 REPLIES 9


    I loved this content about what to do if meditating isn't working for you. Maybe this will help you too? https://community.athletawell.com/t5/Rest-Recharge/Meditating-Not-For-You-Try-This-Instead/ba-p/1677... 

    I'll check this out, thank you @balance4me 


    @NillaMarie I too have a wandering mind when I meditate. When I went through meditation teacher training they shared that a wandering mind is 100% normal. I have found that Jon Kabat-Zin's "9 Attitudes of Mindfulness" (https://bit.ly/3sqTBBB) helped me with a wandering mind reminding me to not judge myself, be patient, accept and let go. Hope that helps! 

    Nice to know its normal, I felt like I was the only person that couldn't truly focus. Thank you for the link @AJS 


    @NillaMarie - So many of us are frustrated by the fact that our minds wander and believe that our minds shouldn't wander. The problem is it's actually the nature of the mind to wander. The wandering isn't a problem, per se, and it can't be "fixed" because we're not robots. We can, however, look at the way that we talk to ourselves when we realize we've wandered. By practicing nonjudgmentally noticing that our attention has shifted, we can refocus our attention more readily instead of getting lost in unkind mental chatter about how our minds should be "better." It's so tricky, but the point of meditation, from my vantage point, isn't to quiet the mind but instead to watch the mind with an attitude of non-judgment and change the repetitive cycle of beating up on ourselves when we get lost in thought.

    Thank you so much for the advice @Lauren_R. I always catch myself and have this "oh shoot!" moment and I try to force myself to refocus. I like the direction of noticing and not being so judgmental. I get hard on myself and it makes me feel like meditation isn't for me. 

    How wonderful that you've been practicing, and I'm glad that you are excited about this idea of non-judgment. I've found it to be very helpful. I will say - given that I am not your therapist I can't give direct advice on this platform. It's always important that you speak with your own therapist about what's best for your journey for direct advice. ❤️

    Thank you!! @Lauren_R 


    I do the exact same thing. Just try to forgive yourself, breathe and not make such a big deal out of it. We can do this!!!!