Insomnia gone, practice diminished

Alejandro Duarte, modified 4 Years ago at 9/17/17 11:10 AM
Created 4 Years ago at 9/17/17 11:10 AM

Insomnia gone, practice diminished

Posts: 7 Join Date: 8/24/17 Recent Posts
A few weeks ago I had a period of insomnia that lasted a few nights and several days to recuperate. Thanks to your collective help, I have come to the conclusion that I was pushing myself too hard and too fast. Perhaps, in other circumstances this is appropriate, but given that I must keep my job and continue parenting to the best of my ability, I believe that I should moderate my approach. So I reduced my practice to my normal, 45 minutes to 1 hour per day. 

However, since that episode, I haven't been getting nearly the same affects as before. Whereas before, I could easily meditate an hour, now I struggle to meditate for 30 minutes. Before, I could quickly drop into "the zone" and feel my body enter a tingly space, now my experience seems far more like an intellectual exercise. When I do feel the tingles, it is almost as though I recoil from them. Before, everything I looked at seemed vibrant, now I have to push myself to see things like that. Before, I had a more equanimous approach to my experiences, now I feel the way I did before I started meditating. My practice seems to somehow have lessened and I'm not sure what's going on. 

Let me add that before the insomnia I was just going on my own, picking up what information I could from various sources (Shinzen, Daniel Ingram, Fronsdal, etc.). However, now I'm trying to follow Culadasa's approach laid out in TMI. 

Any thoughts?

Thanks, Alejandro
Chris M, modified 4 Years ago at 9/17/17 12:29 PM
Created 4 Years ago at 9/17/17 12:29 PM

RE: Insomnia gone, practice diminished (Answer)

Posts: 4414 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
Meditation practice seems never to follow a linear path from "bad" to "good." It's cyclical, it's chaotic, it's random in appearance. Expecting a linear progression of any sort is bound to end up in frustration. Better to keep the same practices for a longer while (have patience) and examine the internal needs and feelings that are arising around the need for something other than what's presently occurring.
David Starflower, modified 4 Years ago at 9/17/17 4:45 PM
Created 4 Years ago at 9/17/17 4:45 PM

RE: Insomnia gone, practice diminished (Answer)

Posts: 33 Join Date: 9/10/17 Recent Posts
If meditation trains "the mental muscle" apply that analogy what you did. You basically ran two marathons a day and now you are doing a short brisk walk in the evening. You had bad experiences overworking yourself (and in the analogy some doctors see marathon running as "beyond healthy") you realised that and shifted your behaviour. Congratulations for getting the insight to what is good for your and what not. Now, from an experiential point of view, you are used to some extreme stimulus and now are only getting a much lighter one. Imagine being on a heavy metal concert and then standing in a quiet forest at night trying to hear a mouse several meters away.

Don't be concerned. Give it time. Keep on observing yourself and have a positive attitude to your practice.