Why Traditional Meditation Just Doesn’t Work for Me

Now, don’t get me wrong, I understand the benefits of meditation and I wish I could crack it. But I’m just one of those people who can’t seem be able to calm their brains down or find it relaxing to do nothing for some time.

And no, I’m not type A personality, I don’t quite fit neither of the two categories, yet I get asked that almost immediately when I mention this problem.

I did find something that relaxes me, though. To find that out, I had to go down the memory lane to remember what I used to do as a child.

People tell me I was one of those kids whom you could leave doing something creative and a few hours later I’d still be found doing it. Actually, I couldn’t help it. All my notebooks at school looked like coloring or sketch books. Teachers told me off for that all the time.

Despite that I found that it relaxed me when I was stressed, it helped me process what the teacher was telling us. They thought I wasn’t paying attention, because I wasn’t staring at them attentively. I was forced to stop it.

While I was au-pairing I did arts & crafts projects with the kids as much as I could. It felt like such a natural activity to do with children.

When I finished au-pairing, I no longer had purpose for this activity and even though I kept drawing on occasion, I sometimes felt guilty for not using all my time for hustle.

Now, even though I’m not one to give into pressures of society (as much as I can), it felt like a topic I couldn’t discuss freely with people without following remarks and questions:

“You must have a lot of free time on your hands. What about household duties? Work? Going out? If you don’t make your living making art, why do it at all? Isn’t it a waste of time and energy?” etc., you get the point.

And then the boom of adult coloring books begun. You couldn’t scroll through your instagram feed without seeing several people sharing pics of their colored mandalas (and other motives).

Suddenly the internet is full of articles about the relaxing effects of drawing and coloring. It’s now cool and hip to do this activity for meditation purposes. Even some of the skeptics seem to be convinced now and are stocking up on coloring books and crayons.

Besides finding it easier to talk about my favorite free time activity now, I found a purpose for it, too. It’s my form of meditation, one suits and helps me.

For quite a while I’ve been intrigued to learn something about graphic design and finally, this December, I found a Graphic Design class by California Art Institute on Coursera. I’m in week 2 now and I’m loving it. Even though I don’t plan on becoming a graphic designer, it surely is a skill that can come handy one day.

There are some fantastic classes on Coursera, you can check them out here!

This is not a paid endorsement. I’ve been taking classes on Coursera since 2012 and I’m very grateful for the opportunity to study with brilliant professors from schools I could never otherwise be able to afford to attend.

Do you meditate? What helped you get into meditation? 

Do you draw/color to relax? What is your favorite coloring book or type of drawing?


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