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Fast Company

It’s common to judge yourself when you first start to meditate, but this is a mistake, says Nina Smiley, director of mindfulness programming at Mohonk Mountain House, a spa resort in New Paltz, New York. “They question whether they are meditating correctly or effectively, which sets up a barrier that only discourages you from continuing to meditate in the future,” she says.

Instead of focusing on yourself, focus on being present and mindful. “Use your doubts as an opportunity to grow in your meditation practice by actively clearing your thoughts and returning your attention to your breathing,” says Smiley. “The most important aspect of meditation is all about being mindful and judgment-free, and each self-questioning thought can be used as a learning opportunity.”

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