Secular Meditations

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My latest therapist and I did have a brief chat about meditation. It’s something I’ve been looking into as a way of helping soothe my anxious thoughts. No, I’m not talking about spiritual processes or achieving some sort of magical state of being. Instead, I’m just talking about meditation as a process of marshaling and ordering my thoughts.

The advice I got was straightforward: there’s a bunch of good free stuff online. Still, there’s a lot of resources out there that imply all sorts of extra benefits outside of the thing I’m looking for. I’ve been staying away from those resources. There’s something about baseless promises that makes me wary.

Even with taking that stuff out, I have to say there’s still a lot of stuff to choose from. Most of my interest is in processes that help me retrain my neurons to stop freaking out at the least excuse. My initial goal is to start small.

The only wrinkle to all of this is that I don’t know how to establish if any of it is working. How do I measure something that hides behind my perception? A straightforward solution to my problem is simple: stop it from hiding. In practice, this means I have to get my thoughts out in the open in ways that make it hard to get rid of.

Mental health is turning out to be like losing weight. The whole process is difficult and fraught with bad advice. Promise of improvement is doubtful, but the outcome is always worth the risk. Which is why I’m currently sifting through a lot of meditation garbage in the hopes that someone threw out treasure instead of trash.