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How to stop intrusive thoughts when meditating

Monk - How to stop intrusive thoughts

You don’t actually NEED to know how to stop intrusive thoughts during meditation because there is a much easier way. So breathe a sigh of relief – you can drop that endless task! 😀

The meditation myth and how to stop intrusive thoughts

There is a myth in the spiritual community that you must stop all your thoughts when you sit in eyes-closed meditation. Many people believe that if they have lots of thoughts, they are failing at their practice. I’m here to tell you that it’s not true!

When I started to meditate, I had an image of a monk sitting in an orange robe, looking incredibly peaceful and Zen. 🧘 I was convinced that his mind was void of thoughts because he looked THAT blissed out. Not necessarily so.

The tumble dryer of turmoil

If you have lots of thoughts when you meditate, you have not failed, gorgeous! I get it. Sometimes it can feel like your mind has morphed into a tumble dryer set at high speed. But the point of meditation is not to empty your mind.

Trust me when I say this is really great news. Why? Have you ever tried to stop intrusive thoughts? How did that work out for you?! We have roughly a hundred thousand thoughts per day, so no wonder trying to stop them all sends people into meltdown. 💫 Personally, I like my sanity, so I was happy to discover that this is actually counterproductive.

True meditation involves learning how to allow EVERYTHING that comes into your experience. Pushing thoughts away is the exact opposite of allowing them. All it does is lead to frustration. At this point, people can quit their meditation practice, which is a real shame.

But I want those blissful experiences! I hear you say. Well, they do happen, for sure. But instead of trying to hang onto them, it’s infinitely more powerful to learn how to fully allow whatever comes along. When you do, the attitude of allowing flows out into the rest of your life. Everything becomes SO effortless. Say hello to less stress! 🥂

What’s the deal with these darn thoughts?

One of the most common reasons that people meditate is to reduce stress. It is one of the best-known benefits of meditation and it’s backed up by oodles of research. (Yes, that is the technical term. 😉)

So what is going on with these thoughts, then? As you go about your days, weeks, months or years, you tend to accumulate stress in your body and nervous system. It builds up because modern daily life is pretty stressful, as you have probably noticed. Significantly though, most of us don’t have a way to properly discharge that stress… until we learn to meditate.

A great analogy uses a sink filling up with water. Think of the sink as the equivalent of your body. The water in the sink represents stress. So as you encounter stressful events, the sink fills up more and more. This is like putting the plug in and turning the taps on. When you meditate, it’s the equivalent of pulling the plug out to allow the stress to start draining away.

The mind and the body are intrinsically linked. When you sit down to meditate, your body starts to heal. Why? You are giving it the rest it needs to do so. Healing is quite an active process, so due to the mind-body connection, activity in the body leads to activity in the mind. What does that look like? Thoughts. 💭

In other words, thoughts are a sign of stress release and healing. Lots of thoughts mean lots of healing. You are draining that reservoir of stress, so your levels of well-being can increase over time. I love telling my clients about this because it completely shifts their perspective and makes meditation MUCH easier.

WANT TO KNOW how to stop intrusive thoughts?

This is really simple. Do as little as possible with them! Learn to let them pass through your awareness like clouds in the sky. Become a peaceful watcher of thoughts. ✌️ The neutral observer.

The monk was peaceful AND he had thoughts. It isn’t the peace OR thought situation it initially appears to be. Ironically, when you let thoughts do what they do naturally, they often disappear.

This is the opposite of what we habitually do… grab onto thoughts and go off into thinking. At this point, we believe our thoughts. We cannot let them go. It can feel like this invisible force has got you in its grip and you cannot get away. This is how you end up frustrated. Now you are fighting your thoughts AND trying to figure out how to make them stop.

So to break out, remember that THOUGHTS ARE OK! They only cause difficulty when you cannot let them pass through your awareness.

It takes special techniques and guidance to pull yourself out of the turmoil and into a deep state of allowing and ease. But when you master this skill, it will change your life beyond all recognition. 👑 You stop believing those limiting and self-sabotaging thoughts. When you do, you experience true spiritual freedom and peace. From here, stepping into the future you want becomes SO easy.

If you’re DONE with the turmoil, I’d love to have a deep chat with you about how you can transform your meditation practice and reduce the stress in your life. Apply for a FREE Spiritual Clarity Call with me to discover what is blocking you from achieving what you want and what you need to do to shift into your brand new reality. I cannot wait to meet you.

Much love,

Clare ❤️

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