I found a response that Tom had made to someone who was having problems with meditating. I think it’s a complete gem. Please do read. 🙂
You need to learn to meditate consistently first before trying more complex things, no wonder you are frustrated. Some how we have to calm that mind down or figure out a way to keep it occupied with non-operational non analytical fluff.
sound: Breathe normally but slowly, you can’t meditate holding your breath. Listen for the mantra while you inhale (breath in)(like listening for the thunder), Then hear the sound of the mantra in your mind while you exhale (breathe out), immediately listen for it again during the next incoming breath, then hear it again while exhaling, etc. As soon as any thoughts intrude, Gently (casually) put them side and begin listening and hearing again with the next breath — always breathing smoothly and slowly. keep this up. for just 5 minutes — set a timer or an alarm. when that gets easy lengthen it to 10 minutes, when that gets easy lengthen it to 20 minutes and then to a half hour. Do this at least several times a day (more when the times are short). EVEN IF THE IF THE LISTENING AND HEARING ONLY LAST A MICROSECOND BEFORE BEING INTERRUPTED, KEEP IT UP, JUST GENTLY AND CALMLY BUT FIRMLY PUT THE THOUGHTS ASIDE AS SOON AS YOU NOTICE AN INTERRUPTION AND THEN GO BACK TO LISTNING AND HEARING. Just do it with no expectations – we are not trying to meditate yet, first we must minimize those interruptions — that’s all, forget meditation for now — we are only trying to minimize the interruptions.
If you keep at it, the time between interruptions will grow – even if it grows from one microsecond to two microseconds, stick with it and it will continue to grow. After three months of multiple times a day, you should notice some progress. At that time, if the interruptions have slowed enough, report in and we will go to step 2
Sight: Same as above except instead of listening and hearing imagine a soccer ball levitating in front of you in one spot. As you breathe in let the ball spin slowly forward (top moving toward you, point closest to you moving down, and point on the bottom surface of the ball moving away from you), As your breath stops, let the ball stop, then as you breathe out let the ball spin slowly backward. Just intently watch the ball. Breathe slowly and rhythmically. All the rest is the same.
You do not need to wait 3 months to let us know what is happening, but do wait three months before analyzing anything or making any judgments. Just do and observe.
It’s a great suggestion really. Don’t jump headlong into meditation… learn to stop those mental interruptions, and before you know it you’ll be meditating!