View Full Version : Meditation and ADHD


-Nick-
01-26-12, 05:27 AM
How could anybody with ADHD possibly meditate?

I went on a ten-day Vipassana meditation retreat and I still JUST CAN'T DO IT. So much of what meditation IS is just... concentation!

Advice, please?

:thankyou:

Saboit
01-26-12, 05:30 AM
yeah I know, I wanted to ask the same, question, thank you.

GeordieDave
01-26-12, 05:38 AM
I do not meditate, however I have friends who do. It's nothing something that works straight away. It takes a lot of time to learn how to do it and for it to actually work.

meadd823
01-26-12, 05:45 AM
There are many forms of meditation - some of them include movement. Ever try trance dancing (http://www.trancedance.com/trancedance.do) I have found it to be a very ADHD way of meditating! There are normally facilitators in group settings so that people do not bump into each other or step on some one seated on the floor. I worried about looking silly for ohh about 15 seconds before I totally didn't care because every one but the hand full of facilitators are wearing blind folds to.

One can meditate while walking or even while being a passenger in a car. Meditation is a state of mind that can for some be better achieved when in motion.


Hope this helps. :)

Saboit
01-26-12, 05:47 AM
do you know what it does and how it helps?

-Nick-
01-26-12, 06:19 AM
To me, pure meditation literally is Vipassanā - supposedly what the Buddha actually taught; "mindful awareness" or "insight" meditation.

To actually bring yourself into awareness is amazing, like being born. But... it has only happened to me a (small) handful of times. Vipassana (supposedly) allows you to train your mind so you can actually live like this.

But I swear: I can't do it!

Saboit
01-26-12, 06:25 AM
well I'm always aware, is it different?

-Nick-
01-26-12, 06:47 AM
Yeah... like a deeper awareness. Or a deeper understanding of everything.

I guess an easy way of putting it is, on a personal level, completely and totally understanding the how, where and why of every single reaction and emotion you ever have. So you are never out of control of yourself.

It's definitely worth doing some serious reading into. Particularly the stripped down spiritual side of it, if you're interested. Pantheism or non-dualism is beautiful, if I had to, I'd call it my religion.

"Meditation for Dummies" is actually quite good for this! Not so good for learning how though, really :confused:.

Saboit
01-26-12, 06:55 AM
thank you very much, I am sure the "how" is still a mystery.

I will read that, thank you!

String
01-26-12, 02:49 PM
Well, I look at my ability to meditate as a way to gauge my ADHD symptoms. When my symptoms are out of control, I'm not able to meditate.

Also practice, practice, practice. Everyone is different, but you might be able to learn something new by working at it over and over, finding a way that works for you. Even when my symptoms are all over the place, I can sometimes get into a meditative state by trying over and over again.

Meditation often helps me.

Fraser_0762
01-26-12, 02:55 PM
I often hear people talking about "meditation" and "concentration".

But my understanding of meditation is the act of clearing your mind and not thinking about anything at all.

If you're supposed to concentrate while meditating, what on Earth are you supposed to be concentrating on???

cameron90
01-26-12, 03:39 PM
Can't do it. The "free your mind of thoughts" thing is the most difficult. I try to do that but that becomes something like "OK, I'm not thinking about anything, but I'm thinking about not thinking, what's not thinking, am I thinking, what is thinking, do animals think like people do, well depends on what kind of animal I guess, like a fish is a little different than a dolphin, remember that time you had a chance to swim with dolphins but didn't, I kind of regret that, I regret a lot of things... CRAP I'M NOT SUPPOSED TO BE THINKING."

String
01-26-12, 03:56 PM
Can't do it. The "free your mind of thoughts" thing is the most difficult. I try to do that but that becomes something like "OK, I'm not thinking about anything, but I'm thinking about not thinking, what's not thinking, am I thinking, what is thinking, do animals think like people do, well depends on what kind of animal I guess, like a fish is a little different than a dolphin, remember that time you had a chance to swim with dolphins but didn't, I kind of regret that, I regret a lot of things... CRAP I'M NOT SUPPOSED TO BE THINKING."

None of the meditation techniques I've studied say that you have to "free your mind." Everything I've studied -- from body scans, relaxation techniques, visualization, mindfulness -- is far from what you describe. (The closest I ever get to a state when my mind is quiet is when I'm first taking Ritalin after a long break.)

Not only is my mind active during the meditation I know, but most meditation techniques teach that my mind will wander and that it's OK for my mind to wander.

Meditation, for me, isn't even about trying to keep my mind from wandering (and definitely not about emptying my mind). It's more a way to get in touch with sensations, get in touch with the present, relax tensions, have a moment of non-doing, resting, etc.

When I can't think about sensations for more than a split second -- focus on my breathing, release tensions -- because I'm too distracted and my brain is too crazy, I know that my ADHD is firing on all fours. I also know that getting to a point where I can relax muscles and think about each of my senses for a few breaths (sight, sound, smell, taste, touch -- including pressure, heat, cold) will almost always be a helpful way to control my ADHD symptoms.

When I read some of the posts in this thread, I wonder what type of "meditation" hokum is being taught out there.

cameron90
01-26-12, 04:08 PM
Oh. I don't know too much about meditation, myself. I just know that this is the case when I try to relax. I do struggle with being in touch with my sensations, or being just in the present, relaxing, not doing anything. I'm not sure why, I think I constantly get distracted by thoughts and I feel like I'm really restless and/or wasting my time so I become very uncomfortable. I think it's the same reason I have trouble falling asleep, especially when non-medicated. I think the hardest part for me personally, is being in the present and only the present, because my mind always exists in the past, present and future simultaneously and I can't seem to help it.

spunkysmum
01-26-12, 04:19 PM
I would imagine that at the very least, you'd have to start off meditating for very short periods of time and then trying to gradually increase the time.

spunkysmum
01-26-12, 04:21 PM
The one thing I can think of that puts me in a state of deep, profound calm, is driving my car in a blizzard. I don't know all the science behind why this works, but I have never felt that level of calm and relaxation at any other time or in any other situation.

-Nick-
01-27-12, 12:21 PM
Well, the only type of meditation I would really recommend would be Vipassanā... hopefully that's not the meditation you were calling "hokum"! "Mindfulness" practices are based on Vipassanā.

But I can't do it... unmedicated, at least.

Has anyone with an interest in meditation (any type) noticed any massive differences in their practice when on or off medication?

-Nick-
01-27-12, 12:22 PM
I should say, I think all styles of meditation have benefits, I just think Vipassanā comes closest to the "core" of what makes meditation what it is.

-Nick-
01-27-12, 12:23 PM
spunkysmum - I kind of know what you mean... like the calm is almost down to the absolute, absolute intensity of the hyperfocus? But it's tiring...

GeordieDave
01-27-12, 01:12 PM
i took a lovely run this afternoon in a huge natural park/forrest .. it was so quiet and it really helped me think about stuff, my mind felt much clearer. Going to go for a run down there again tomorrow

-Nick-
01-27-12, 01:22 PM
I envy your ability to run! I don't know what's wrong with my legs...

Sounds like you combined the two major things people say are AMAZING for relaxation - nature and running.

meadd823
01-29-12, 08:29 AM
do you know what it does and how it helps?

In trance dancing one is blind folded or it is done at night {darkness} The object is to move without seeing. The idea is that being unable to use your eye to see images from the outside world one is able to more easily see the inner world / spiritual world / alter consciousness {pick one}

Yes I have done this and found it to be healing. I was stuck on some pretty self degrading thought and this exercise allowed me more insight nto the situation without the self defeating tapes playing over and over at nausea.

I enjoyed it and recommend it because I didn't have this foreboding feeling of having to make my self meditate or concentrate.

I still practice other forms of meditation it is just that this one felt more natural and therefore provided an excellent starting point.

In my quest for spiritual growth I have found the all or nothing approach to be quiet a determinant in that effort.

I do not have to practice one form of meditation at the expense of practicing another. I do not have to cast circles clockwise to be energetically balanced, I do not have to call one form of spiritual practice false in order to see my own as valid.

Vipassana Fellowship. (http://www.vipassana.com/index.php)

Interesting on-line read I thought it was going to be all commercial but it had many readily available articles and books or parts of books that could be read on-line or down loaded for later reading.