Because Zen makes sense

Meditation and Planning

Meditation to me means focusing, being here and now. I try to mentally rinse my mind of past and future, not being afraid of drifting away in my thoughts, but being enough aware of what’s happening so that I can focus back. I focus back on my breath, on sensations on my body, on sounds, but most of all on my breath.
Then I observe that planning is the factor that most often make my thoughts drift away. I plan the day, I plan my work, I plan my presentations, I sort my ideas, I plan my physical training programme etc. And when I start this way of thought-wandering, I can be in my planning for many minutes before I sort of wake up and focus back.
This is quite a paradox, because I feel that in moments of stress, when my duties hang over me, I need being here and now more than ever. And at the same time my thoughts wonder off more than ever.
Not that I am judgmental towards myself. This is how things are, and I recognize my planning as an old, interrupting, friend. I often, though, wish that my old friend would postpone the visit to another time, and not disturb my meditation. But my mind function this way, I can’t force it, and I have to accept this well known disturbance.
And I guess I am not alone experiencing planning during my meditation. That’s a kind of comfort.


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5 thoughts on “Meditation and Planning

  1. jacksaunsea on said:

    I can certainly relate to mentally living in the present – as in reality all of us always are – with having a schedule and plan for things that are “supposed” to happen in my future. It is certainly a useful function to agree with a friend about what time and where to meet to engage in relationship, but I find that when I have a time in the future set with a place I am supposed to be or something I am supposed to do, I feel restrained by that plan and constricted by what I may actually feel like I need to do, if that happens to be something different than what was already planned. Then people think “he’s a flake” if I were to choose something else to do when a previously made plan had been made.

    Which I suppose is one reason I love to travel so much and feel most like myself – being in the present – when I am exploring new places where the people I spend time with are those who I meet and can engage in relationships as I go.

    • Nice thoughts. But difficult regarding work etc. My days are full of plans, of meetings, of lectures, of duties. Some days are sort of “recovery-days” where I can stress more down and contemplate. My job actually demands time for reflections and contemplation, but in other periods there are only “plans” of one sort or the other. My challenge is to put aside the daily time to meditate, to free myself of all my plans, and to stay in the moment. And there my plans still enter through my minds back door. My response is to focus back, not to try to avoid my intruding thoughts.
      Thanks for your comment.

      • jacksaunsea on said:

        I think I could learn much from you, good sir 🙂

      • Don’t count on that. It seems to me that you put things into practice, while I study the theories. And while practice is real life, theories are only mirrors of reality. Your contemplations impress me.

  2. Pingback: On Meditation and Planning | Zensible

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