Seven Common Obstacles to Meditating

Overcoming your initial roadblocks in meditation practice is often part of what prevents people from getting started.

The most common reasons I hear why people don’t try to meditate are:

  • I don’t have time for it
  • I can’t sit still
  • My mind won’t stop racing

These are normal responses and should not be a reason to give up.


Obstacle #1:

Feeling restless or having difficulty relaxing

  • Try guided relaxation or yoga Nidra meditation.
  • Go for a walk, do some yoga or dance before meditating to release some energy.
  • Clench and relax each muscle group, working your way down from your face to your toes.

Obstacle #2:

Feeling drowsy or falling asleep

  • Sleepiness is fine if you are doing meditation before bed.
  • At any other time, try meditating away from your bedroom as your brain tends to associate it with sleep.
  • Try a sitting posture rather than lying down.
  • Do some stretches or go for a walk before meditating.
  • Avoid eating and drinking before meditating.
  • Ensure you’re getting enough sleep at night.

Obstacle #3:

Feeling emotional

  • It’s common for emotions and thoughts to arise when sitting for long periods without the distractions of keeping busy.
  • Crying, laughing, and passing gas are signs of releasing tension and will usually clear as you continue.
  • Be gentle and kind to yourself. If it becomes too intense, you may wish to stop and continue later when you have processed or released the emotion.
  • If persistent thoughts or emotions affect your ability to enjoy everyday life or function correctly, please seek professional counselling services.

Obstacle #4:

Losing interest and drifting off

  • Mindfulness meditation is a means to embrace and accept life rather than trying to escape reality.
  • It’s normal to sometimes feel sensations of ‘drifting off, but it’s essential to remain aware.
  • If you’re feeling dizzy, lightheaded or disorientated, try to focus on your breathing and where you can feel the breath in your body – such as your nostrils, chest or belly.

Obstacle #5:

Hyper (or hypo) ventilation

  • Changes in your breathing pattern can increase or decrease levels of CO2, causing dizziness and anxiety.
  • Breathe in and out through your nostrils, at your own natural pace and rhythm.
  • Don’t try to hold your breath or breathe too deeply.
  • Symptoms should pass. If they don’t, try a physical activity like walking and seek medical advice if they persist.

Obstacle #6:

Feeling guilty

  • Feeling guilty for taking this time out for yourself – especially when it looks like you’re doing nothing- can hinder your progress. 
  • Remind yourself that self-care is vital for physical and mental wellbeing, and maintaining harmonious relationships.
  • If you don’t look after yourself, it will hamper your care for others and even your performance at work, home or sport.
  • Remember that meditation can help you be more productive as it brings greater focus and clarity.
  • Just like physical exercise, the key to maximising the benefits of meditation is consistency. The longer you meditate, the greater the benefits will be. 

Obstacle #7:

Feeling uncomfortable

  • A little bit of discomfort is okay to keep you awake and aware. But too much pain will distract you from your meditation practice and its benefits.
  • Try focussing on your breathing until any minor discomforts like cramps, itching, or mild pain go away.
  • Massage or rub the area or if needed.
  • Stretch and mindfully move your body into a more comfortable position

Kind Words

Sean Lappin
May 26, 2024

Natalie’s journey began as a personal one, embodying her practice and then working with her colleagues within her own business to assist them to realise the many benefits Natalie knows are associated with mindfulness approaches. She brings this experience and integrity to establishing Alite Mind. An organisation that she has established to help others on their mindfulness journeys.

Natalie works with people of all ages with a high level of professionalism, grounded in years of study across a range of therapeutic approaches. Along with her genuine, caring and positive personality she consistently delivers high quality services in meditation and counseling.

Tim James
April 30, 2024

I have known Natalie since January 2020 and am so grateful our paths crossed. Natalie has incredible enthusiasm, is a leader in any area she steps into and has a deep passion and ability to support others. It has been an honour to witness her journey over the last 5 years, from bringing mindfulness practices to staff at her engineering business, to studying meditation, mindfulness and counselling and commencing Alite Mind studio at St Agnes to further support the community. Natalie has created a beautiful space for learning, growth and healing and offers amazing services for young ones and adults. She is a heart centred practitioner always looking for ways to enhance the support available to members of the community. I highly recommend Natalie and her offerings.

Lisa Forde
April 26, 2024

Natalie is a passionate and authentic meditation teacher who is highly dedicated to her craft and clients. She walks her talk with continued professional and personal development and brings joy, colour and fun into her group sessions and work with children. I highly recommend her classes.

Ben Walsham
March 27, 2024

I had meditated on and off for a number of years but recently I was seeking something more grounded and consistent. I joined Natalie's group and have seen a massive improvement to my practice. It's a supportive environment and have learnt a lot since joining. Highly recommend for anyone looking to develop their mindfulness!

Meaghan Willington
March 19, 2024

I have attended 2 meditation classes with Natalie and absolutely love it. Natalie makes you feel so welcome from the moment you walk in. The room is very calming and is a beautiful space to relax. You walk out feeling positive and relaxed and I cant wait for the next Monday night session. Thanks so much Natalie.

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