🧘 How do I control my mind during meditation?

Meditation as we offer it at Ten Percent Happier is not about controlling the mind. When we sit in meditation, we’re often instructed just to be mindful of the flow of different experiences: the breath coming in and out of the body, physical sensations coming and going, sounds arising and passing away, thoughts and emotions coming up in the mind and then disappearing. We don’t need to do anything with this flow of experience, including trying to control or change it. We're just practicing staying mindful of it exactly as it is, seeing our experience clearly.

One of the insights that we may glean as we practice is that although we may not control our thoughts, what we DO have some control over is how we relate to our thoughts. For example, if we notice an unhelpful thought arising and can see it as just a thought and not buy into it, then we are learning how to use mental processes in a skillful way.