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Hi everyone,

 I do quite a lot of creative visualization and also some general meditation. But I have this continual problem with my mind wandering to other things: general distractions about my day to day life. I'm trying to imagine the scene but then I suddenly realise I've lost several minutes where my mind wandered off to something else. And if I want to just meditate in order to rest my mind and think about nothing, it proves even more difficult.

Any tips on how I can train myself to concentrate better?

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I love the way you have written that, Roses. :-)

I either focus on colours or on music. Classical music works the best for me. 

Music sounds like a good idea, Wonder. With classical I find some Eric Satie very calming, so I might try that. 

I've resolved this in various ways, as it depends upon what I'm trying to do and what's going on

1. Meditate in the morning when you first wake up. You have access to your full energy for the day, and often we're less stressed out when we first wake up because we haven't been bombarded with all of the issues of the day yet. As well, I find it to be a lot more quiet early in the morning than during the day or in the evening. At the end of my days I'm usually stuck thinking about all the events of the day, worries of tomorrow, and general tiredness.

2. Focus and pay attention to your breathing. If you give your focus to how you're breathing and count your breathes, that often helps to keep the chatter to a minimum because you focus your conscious mind upon that instead. As well, it's ideal to learn how to properly breathe, and this also aids that purpose. 

3. Awareness. I know it sounds backwards, but the more you resist the chatter, the more the chatter chats. You job isn't to prevent or resist it, as trying to do that usually creates it further. Simply work upon your awareness of the chatter. Pay attention to how the thought forms seem to just emerge out of nowhere, and just as they appeared, allow them to also subside. The more you become aware of your thoughts and allow them to simply flow as they are, the better you become at being able to redirect them quickly until you learn to do it automatically while meditating. 

I want to just meditate in order to rest my mind and think about nothing

Do you see the fallacy of those words? That is similar to saying "I want to do nothing," which in itself is doing something. If you're trying to think of nothing, you're thinking. So in your state of trying to think of nothing, you're causing yourself to think, and when you're thinking all kinds of things emerge from that inner void place. Even when you go to bed at night and are supposedly "resting," what is your mind doing? It's creating all kinds of new realities while it waits on you. The mind doesn't care about rest, your body does. So the trick is simply allowing your mind to be itself and flow, but you becoming its regulator through the awareness of it. Awareness is key, as it offers you control. 

Thank you for such a helpful reply, Darth Intentions. I'm going to take everything into account, especially the point you made at the end. :-)

Sorry for going slightly off topic here but I am also a beginner with meditation and I have started using some of the videos on YouTube and trying out different ones.

So far I have done ones relating to getting back an ex/finding love, money and gaining positive energy. This may be a silly question so apologies but is it ok to use these guided meditations on different subjects or would I be sending out mixed signals to the universe by mixing up all these subjects on the same day?

I have been enjoying these and I also want to try guided mediation for motivation but it just popped into my head that it may be a hindrance to do so many different subject meditations within a short space of time.

Hi Alfie,

There is really only one thing the Universe responds to: whether you have a high vibration or a low one. Your requests have already been sent out and received. All you have to do now is allow your requests to manifest by feeling good. That is the only reason any of these processes are suggested: they are just ways to help you feel good. You don't even have to focus on the topic itself--just find any reason to get those good vibes going.

W&F

Do not try to stop the monkey with a monkey. When you use your mind to resist you mind, it creates double resistance with double the thoughts. Just observe them, experience them fully, completely. Give your thoughts full attention. When you realize, that you are not your mind and not your thoughts, that you can observe them with curiosity, they will not hold you captive. And you will not hold them captive either. Be like a mirror -reflect them, let them float by. Mirror doesn't try to grab onto the image and hold it or judge itself for reflecting something. Just observe them gently and softly.

  We have bodies and minds, but we are not them. They are our vehicles in this particular reality, but we are life. We are energy. Of course we have role we play in this movie, but if we can always keep the knowing of that broader perspective, we do not take this life so seriously and can have much more pleasant movie or vacation.

Thank you, Easefirst. 

I would say that it's probably a case of practice makes perfect.  The more you meditate, the better you get at it, and the better you get at firstly, stilling your mind, and then focusing it.  If not, maybe try something like the FOCUS WHEEL technique written in Abe books.

Meditation on breath works for me most of the time - learnt from a buddhist monk

https://kmcmanchester.org/

go to some mediation classes - different teachers - see what works for you.

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