How to Know if Meditation is Working TL;DR

  1. You Find Yourself Feeling Physically Relaxed Head to Toe During Your Meditations
  2. You Find Yourself Nearly (or Actually) Falling Asleep During Your Meditations
  3. You Find Yourself Losing Sense of Time, Space, Identity, and Body During Your Meditations.
  4. You Find Yourself More Aware and in Control of Your Thoughts
  5. You Find Yourself More Aware and in Control of Your Feelings
  6. You Find Yourself More Aware and in Control of Your Body
  7. You Find Yourself Finding the Present Moment More Easily During Your Meditation
  8. You Find Yourself Living in the Present Moment in Daily Life
  9. You Find Yourself Thinking More Clearly to Make Better Choices
  10. You Find Yourself Being Less Reactive in Difficult or Stressful Situations
  11. You Find Yourself in Less of a Rush
  12. You Find Yourself Becoming More Patient
  13. You Find Yourself Being Less Judgmental Toward Yourself and Others
  14. You Find Communication in Relationships is Becoming Easier
  15. You Find Yourself Getting Deeper and Better Sleep
  16. You Find Yourself Embracing Uncertainty and ‘the Unknown’
  17. You Find Yourself Looking Forward to and Prioritizing Your Meditation Session

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This is from my blog about Meditations and Personal Development in general. Here are the 9 Personal Development Skills that changed my life.

how to know if meditation is working, 17 common signs

Have you just started meditating but wondering if your meditation is working? Maybe you’re unsure if you’re doing it right… or if it’s even making a difference in your daily life!

Research shows regular meditation practice and even daily meditation practice has a lot of benefits. But learning how to do it can be a challenge if you’re not sure what a successful meditation is supposed to look or feel like.

In this article, you’ll learn about 18 signs during and outside of your meditations to help you know you’re on the right track and meditate with confidence!

3 things to know about figuring out if meditation is working

3 Quick Caveats

When you first begin meditating, you may not experience any of these signs at all – But if you meditate correctly, with regular practice, your spiritual awakening and other benefits will be just around the corner.

I also strongly suggest you find a guided meditation that works for you – There are many forms of meditation. And depending on your goal, one may be more effective than another. Headspace is a great place to start.

Get a good pair of headphones for meditation – This was the biggest difference maker that helped me get into a deep meditative state easy and consistent. Don’t wait like I did, it’s a game changer.

Now, without further ado, let’s get started!


How To Know If Meditation Is Working: 17 Common Signs

physical relaxation meditation

1. You Find Yourself Feeling Physically Relaxed Head to Toe During Your Meditations

Many people might not realize it, but feeling really relaxed during meditation is a good sign! And If your goal is to relax, that’s great, but it can also be just the beginning. Being relaxed is like the first step for beginners.

Imagine it this way: 

When you can make your whole body feel super relaxed whenever you want, it’s like you’re telling your thinking mind (conscious mind) to take a break and letting your deeper, hidden thoughts (subconscious mind) come forward. 

This is a good sign because the subconscious mind is often the gateway to deeper transformations and life-changing experiences.

We can talk more about the subconscious mind in another article, but if you notice this happening, you’re doing well.

There is another time when your mind naturally goes into this relaxed state – when you’re sleeping. That’s why sometimes you might feel a bit sleepy as you go deeper into meditation.

how to know if meditation is working, falling asleep during meditation

2. You Find Yourself Nearly (or Actually) Falling Asleep During Your Meditations

Feeling like you might fall asleep or getting a bit sleepy during meditation can be a concern, especially when you’re just starting out. It’s totally fine and it can actually be a sign that you’re meditating correctly!

There are two important sides to this:

1. If you’ve been skipping out on sleep lately, your body might be telling you it needs rest. I used to think I could function well with just 4 hours of sleep, but when I started getting a solid 8 hours every night, it made a huge difference in my life – during and outside meditations.

2. Sometimes, when you’re deep into meditation, it might feel like you’re losing consciousness. But it’s not the same as falling asleep. Most people only lose consciousness when they fall asleep, so they confuse it with sleepiness. However, for advanced meditators, this is often a positive sign. It means your subconscious mind is taking the lead.

Now, falling asleep or getting proper rest isn’t a “bad” thing. But if your goal is to experience deep, life-changing benefits from meditation, then yes, we should aim to stay awake and aware.

Consider making your bedtime and winding-down routine a priority. You’ll not only feel more refreshed but also find it easier to meditate without completely drifting off.

how to know if meditation is working, losing sense of time, space, identity, and body

3. You Find Yourself Losing Sense of Time, Space, Identity, and Body During Your Meditations.

One way to know that you’re making progress in your meditation practice is when you start to lose track of time, space, who you are, and even your physical body.

This is actually a really good sign because it means you’re getting closer to something that most meditations aim for: The Present Moment.

But what exactly is the Present Moment?

Well, it’s right now. 

It’s not you in the past, not who you’ll be in the future, and not even who you are at this very moment based on your past or future. It’s simply the current moment, which comes and goes pretty quickly.

The Present Moment, or as Dr. Joe Dispenza calls it, “The Generous Present Moment,” is when you become no one, no physical body, not any thing, in no time (this timeline), and in no space (your environment).

That’s why many meditation sessions have you close your eyes. It’s to help you disconnect from your regular physical reality as much as possible. I even use an eyemask and headphones for meditations.

When you become no one, no body, no thing, in no time and space, it helps you find the present moment because you’re letting go of all the limits you usually put on yourself.

For a little while, you’re deciding to step out of the box you normally live in. You’re giving yourself a chance to become something bigger, an awareness that’s not held back by the limits you usually put on yourself because of “who you are”, or “who you should be”.

And when you find the present moment, it means you’re not stuck in your past or always chasing after the future. In this moment, all your worries turn into calm, and your stress becomes mindfulness. So if you ever find yourself in the present moment… well, stay there!

This is the next big thing for someone who meditates, right after you’ve learned how to relax deeply. Actually, learning to relax deeply is almost like a warm-up for reaching the present moment, so remember that.

If you ever feel like you’re “losing yourself” during meditation, get excited because you’re about to discover the real you. It might feel strange at first, but you’ll feel calmer. You’ll have improved focus and increased focus. And you’ll wish this moment could last forever.

Losing your sense of time, space, identity, and body during meditation means you’re meditating correctly and is definitely a good sign that your meditations are working.

how to know if meditation is working, aware of your thoughts

4. You Find Yourself More Aware and in Control of Your Thoughts

While you’re meditating and even when you’re not, you might notice a particular thought or even an entire thought process.

This is actually a good thing because it means you have the power to either get rid of negative thoughts or turn them into even more positive thoughts.

If you ever realize you’re becoming aware of what’s going on in your mind, that’s a clear sign that you’re meditating successfully and something positive is starting to happen. 

how to know if meditation is working, aware of your feelings

5. You Find Yourself More Aware and in Control of Your Feelings

While you’re meditating and even when you’re not, you might start noticing certain feelings and emotions that you’ve been having.

Just like with your thoughts, being aware of your feelings is a big step. It means you can make the bad emotions weaker and the good ones stronger.

You’ll realize that you don’t have to be in a bad mood if you don’t want to. You can choose to be happy. You can choose peace over stress. 

This is when your meditation practice really starts to change how you feel inside, and it shows on the outside too. Stay excited and keep up with your meditation practice!

how to know if meditation is working, aware of your body

6. You Find Yourself More Aware and in Control of Your Body

As you keep meditating, the next step is becoming more aware of and having control over your body and what you do, both during meditation and in everyday life.

Think about it this way:

You’ve practiced making your body stay still, resist the urge to scratch an itch, and sit up straight during meditation. You’ve been in charge!

Now, along with controlling your thoughts and feelings, controlling your body just becomes something you do naturally.

Your thoughts and feelings actually influence the things you do, but we won’t get into all that in this article. If you’re interested, you can read about it in the context of Quantum Jumping Meditations here.

What it means, though, is that you’ll naturally become more disciplined than most people. Stress or a bad mood won’t make you do things you regret.

Plus, you’ll start noticing lots of benefits, like improvements in your relationships. That’s because you’re not just in control of your thoughts and emotions, but your voice and actions too.

It’s another great sign that your meditation practice is on the right track! Keep it up!

how to know if meditation is working, finding the present moment more easily

7. You Find Yourself Finding the Present Moment More Easily During Your Meditation

What used to be tough gets easier with lots practice, practice, practice… and more practice!

We’re talking about something happening inside you, so it’s kind of tricky to explain exactly how it looks and feels.

But give it a few weeks, maybe even a few months, and you’ll learn how to meditate correctly.

You’ll begin to understand what the present moment is all about, how it feels during meditation, and what it feels like afterward.

You’ll also figure out what kinds of thoughts, feelings, and actions are most common for you, and how to let go of what happened in the past and what’s happening right now.

When you start to grasp the way your inner self and the universe talk to you during meditation, you’re making good progress.

But here’s a tip: try not to get stuck in routines, expecting things to be a certain way every time you meditate. That’s like holding onto how your past meditations were and expecting them to happen again… which is the opposite of the present moment!

Stay Present!

how to know if meditation is working, living in the present moment in daily life

8. You Find Yourself Living in the Present Moment in Daily Life

This part is pretty exciting because when you notice that you can escape from the busy daily life and be in the present moment, even when you’re not meditating… oh, it’s something special.

Here’s the thing:

it means that when everything seems crazy and nothing’s going right, you can become no one, nothing, no body, in no time, and no place. It means you can let go of what happened before and stop worrying about what’s going to happen in the future.

Don’t get me wrong, meditating is better than not meditating at all.

But there’s a whole new level of benefits waiting for you when you’re practicing meditation throughout the day.

Think of it like going to the gym five times a week but still eating unhealthy. It’s better than doing nothing, but it’s not as effective as it could be.

If you catch yourself not living in the moment, don’t get upset. Instead, be thankful for it and take a moment to connect with the present moment.

Before you know it, those moments where you’re not in the present will get shorter and shorter. That’s when you’ll be enjoying all the benefits of meditation all day long, not just when you’re meditating.

It’s a fantastic sign of progress, so keep on meditating!

how to know if meditation is working, thinking more clearly and making better choices

9. You Find Yourself Thinking More Clearly to Make Better Choices

A big sign that your meditation is working is when you can step back and see yourself from an outside perspective.

This means you can look at your thoughts and feelings objectively, which in the end affects the choices and decisions you make.

Have you ever done or said something and later wished you hadn’t? Or maybe you’ve realized that you sometimes mess up good things for yourself?

When your actions show who you really are and aren’t driven by past hurts, traumas, fear, or anxiety about the future, that’s a sign that you’re growing in your meditation practice and that meditation is working for you.

how to know if meditation is working, less reactive in difficult or stressful situations

10. You Find Yourself Being Less Reactive in Difficult or Stressful Situations

Another way to know you’re getting better is when you don’t react strongly in tough or stressful situations.

For example, it means not getting really upset when someone criticizes you, even if the criticism isn’t fair. Or when someone cuts you off while driving, or even worse, hits your car from behind.

This is a sign of progress because it shows that you’re not just following the way you used to react in those situations.

Instead of getting caught up in a whirlwind of emotions, you’re the one in charge.

Bad things can happen to good people, but it’s how well you know yourself inside that will either lead to more negative or more positive experiences in life.

how to know if meditation is working, in less of a rush

11. You Find Yourself in Less of a Rush

Here’s one of my favorite things about meditation.

You don’t always have to rush around because you’re not always pressured to reach the future.

Why bother? After all, the future is… now!

You’ve experienced how amazing the present moment can be, and it not only makes your life better but also makes the people around you happier.

This shows how meditation is making a positive difference in your inner world and in your life, benefiting both you and the people you’re with.

how to know if meditation is working, becoming more patient

12. You Find Yourself Becoming More Patient

You’ll begin to see that when you focus on the present moment, there’s no room for worry or stress. And as you become more patient, it’s because the calm of the present moment affects how you think and feel.

You’ll start realizing that there’s no need to rush, there’s always enough time, and things will work out in the end. So where does impatience fit in your life anymore?

Being more patient is a sign that you’re connecting to something bigger than just yourself. A wisdom only those who live beyond time and space can appreciate. 

And trust me, your spouse or partner will appreciate this change!

Meditation is a powerful tool for making positive changes, and patience naturally comes when you meditate the right way.

how to know if meditation is working, becoming less judgmental

13. You Find Yourself Being Less Judgmental Toward Yourself and Others

Judgment is another example of what happens when your mind is stuck in the past or too focused on the future.

But when you become no one, no body, no thing, in no time, and no place, and you start connecting to that bigger awareness, you’ll notice something interesting. You’ll actually see a bit of yourself in everyone, everybody, everything, in every moment, and everywhere.

This means you’ll become more understanding, and there won’t be a need or even space in your heart to judge others. And maybe even more importantly, you won’t judge yourself so harshly.

Remember, nobody’s perfect.

When you concentrate on the generous present moment, you’ll see those small, judgmental thoughts and behaviors vanish from your life. And when that happens, you can be sure that meditation is making working for you.

how to know if meditation is working, communication becomes easier

14. You Find Communication in Relationships is Becoming Easier

I’m sure you know where this is going after all we’ve discussed, but your coworkers and especially your spouse will really appreciate this.

Since you’re not someone who easily gets stressed and reacts strongly due to past events, your relationships will feel much more peaceful.

Also, since you won’t always be worried and rushing towards a future that’s all planned out, you’ll be able to fully enjoy every moment you spend with the people you care about the most.

Meditation helps you focus on what truly matters, so you won’t waste the present moment.

And when you see relationships that used to be tense or distant starting to heal and grow again, it’s definitely a sign that meditation is working in your life.

how to know if meditation is working, getting better and deeper sleep

15. You Find Yourself Getting Deeper and Better Sleep

It might not get talked about as much, but when you can consciously slow down your brain waves to alpha and delta levels (which happens when you’re in the present moment), you become really good at relaxing both your body and mind.

That means no more feeling restless, no more tossing and turning when you’re trying to sleep.

Some people might notice that they have more active dreams when they meditate. There could be various reasons for this, and it might even be tiring depending on the dream.

But always be grateful for your dreams. It’s just another way that a higher power might be trying to communicate with you.

how to know if meditation is working, embracing uncertainty and embracing the unknown

16. You Find Yourself Embracing Uncertainty and ‘the Unknown’

Discovering the present moment, where you become no body, no one, not anything, in no time, and no place, is the definition of being in the unknown.

The interesting thing about the ‘unknown’ is that even though it’s uncertain, it brings the potential for endless opportunities.

Instead of always trying to figure out how to make something happen, you realize that it’s often better to stay in the unknown and let unexpected solutions solve your problems in ways you might not even have imagined.

After all, if you knew the solution, it wouldn’t be a problem, right?

how to know if meditation is working, prioritizing meditation sessions

17. You Find Yourself Looking Forward to and Prioritizing Your Meditation Session

When you start seeing all the good things that meditation brings to your life, you can’t help but feel excited for your next meditation.

It’s like with most things in life. We don’t become really excited about something just because we’re good at it. As we get better, our passion for it grows.

The key is to pay attention to the little victories and the small changes in your life. 

If you don’t appreciate or you’re not thankful for these small improvements, don’t be surprised if you start to feel like you’re stuck or even going backwards!

happy and fulfilled woman excited about life thanks to meditation

Conclusion

Meditation helps in all areas of your life.

It can improve your mental health, your ability to focus, and even lower your blood pressure! The potential impact on your everyday life is literally endless.

If you’ve been with me through this whole read, I mention what an important step ‘finding the generous present moment’ is.

It really is a foundational milestone that can yield so many benefits of meditation. And I hope the earlier signs I mentioned will help give you the assurance and guidance you need to connect with the present moment on a daily basis.

If you have any questions regarding anything here, you can contact me via the contact page. Your messages will go directly to my email.

If you want to get similar articles or shorter insights delivered to your email inbox, subscribe to my newsletter.

Now I’ll take some time to answer some general questions that seem to trip up a lot of beginner meditators.


FAQ – Answers for the New Meditator

I’ll keep the answers in this section more informational and to the point. If you would like to ask a more detailed question, reach out to me with your question via the contact page and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.

how do you know meditation works

How Do You Know If Meditation Works?

Apart from the recent scientific research, the quickest way to understand it is by trying it yourself. I see meditation as my own experiment with the universe, and it’s been working well for me. That’s why I wrote this article – to share some of my personal experiences with new meditators so they can relate until they become more comfortable. Give it a shot, and if you have any questions, feel free to ask. I’ll do my best to help!

am i meditating correctly

Am I Meditating Correctly?

You might be already, and even if you’re not, you’ll learn how. The fact that you’re looking for resources like this shows that you’re going in the right direction! But I want to emphasize how important it is to make things a bit easier when you’re just beginning. Consider getting a comfy eye mask, some headphones for meditation, and a reliable guided meditation session. I’ll create a list of my favorite guided meditations soon, so feel free to sign up for my newsletter if you want updates like this one!

how long should i meditate

How Long Should I Meditate?

Meditation can last a short while, like a minute, or it can stretch to as long as three hours. The great thing about meditation is that it’s like your special time with destiny. When you find a guided meditation that suits you, it often takes care of the duration. 

But I hope you have the experience where the guided meditation ends, and you’re feeling so good that you wish it didn’t end so quickly! So, what matters most isn’t how long you meditate, but how good it feels. And remember, in deep meditation, you step outside of regular time anyway. A minute might feel like an hour, and an hour might feel like just a minute.

am i meditating often enough

Am I Meditating Often Enough?

I don’t believe you can meditate too much, as long as you’re truly meditating and paying attention to the signs mentioned here. The only time it might become a problem is if you were just thinking a lot and not really staying in the present moment during the long periods you set aside for meditation. A simple rule is to begin with one guided meditation a day. Make it a daily practice if you want it to. Being consistent is more crucial than doing it too often. I personally meditate anywhere from 30 minutes to 1.5 hours a day.

is it normal to have so many thoughts during meditation

Is It Normal To Have So Many Thoughts During Meditation?

Absolutely! I still have lots of thoughts rushing into my mind when I start meditating. It happens because we’re so used to thinking about our past and future while trying to be in the present moment. 

What I do is imagine each thought as a balloon tied to a string connected to my head. Then, I use my imaginary scissors to cut the string at the bottom of my head, and I watch the thought float away. I repeat this process over and over until there’s nothing except my brain. 

Eventually, I let go of that image as well because becoming ‘nothing’ also means becoming more than just my brain. It’s becoming pure consciousness.

what if i cant sit still during meditaiton

What If I Can’t Sit Still During Meditation?

Unless there’s a medical issue holding you back, it’s actually a positive sign that you’ve identified a challenge. It’s like your body is a spirited horse, resisting and trying to distract your mind from what you want to do – meditate. 

I’ve witnessed Parkinson’s patients making significant improvements by using meditation to reduce or even eliminate their tremors. For most of us, though, it’s mostly a mental challenge. 

You’re more capable than you realize, and you’ll be amazed at what’s possible when you gain control not just over your body but also your thoughts and emotions.

what are you supposed to feel during meditation

What Are You Supposed To Feel While Meditating?

I won’t pretend that everyone should feel like they’re floating on clouds during meditation because each person experiences the neurochemical effects differently. 

BUT! For me, the best way to explain it is that it feels like goosebumps starting in my brain and then spreading from my head to my arms and legs. 

Have you ever used one of those head massagers that gives you goosebumps on your scalp? It’s a bit like that. 

This sensation usually happens as I get closer to being fully in the present moment. So, with more practice, you’ll start to recognize what different stages of meditation feel like for you and what they signify.

what does successful meditation look like

What Does Successful Meditation Look Like?

I don’t measure how good my meditation is by how many ‘chills’ I experience or how great I feel afterward. Some days are easier, and some are tougher. But for me, successful meditation means I set a time, I showed up with clear intentions, I sat down, I kept my body still, and I tried my best to be present in the moment. 

That’s all you can do, really. It’s also reassuring to know that’s all it requires. 

You can’t control the unknown because it’s, well, unknown. You can only prepare yourself as best as you can, and my preparation for my meditation is how I evaluate its ‘success.’

how long does it take for meditation to work

How Long Does It Take For Meditation To Work?

Results can vary; some may happen quickly, while others may take years. If you’re actively seeking and appreciating the signs I discussed here, you’ll begin to notice the benefits of meditation showing up in your life relatively quickly. 

However, when it comes to Manifesting through meditation and achieving specific outcomes, it’s mainly about consciously aligning your thoughts, emotions, and actions with your desired reality. And if you’re meditating effectively, it doesn’t have to take years either.  If this topic interests you, you can check out my comprehensive article on What is Quantum Jumping Meditations. It’s long but thorough.

is meditation really making a difference in my life

Is Meditation Really Making A Difference In My Life?

When you truly connect with the generous present moment, it’s impossible to stay the same. The signs are always there, but we can miss them for various reasons. 

Perhaps the change doesn’t appear the way we expect it to, or maybe we don’t fully understand how our higher power communicates with us… (I’ve even had problems solved through YouTube videos and you can explore more about this in my article on Quantum Jumping Meditations). 

It’s crucial to pay attention to these signs and show gratitude for them. If you never acknowledge and appreciate the small signs, you won’t become fluent in the language of the universe, and the universe might stop sending you signs altogether. Regardless of how much you meditate, it’s essential to express gratitude for the present and the unknown future.

how do you know if you are getting better at meditaiton

How Do You Know If You Are Getting Better At Meditation?

Practice, practice, practice, and everything will fall into place! I believe that meditation is a lifelong skill, and it may take a lifetime to truly master, if that’s even possible. You’ll start to notice some big changes when you understand what the present moment is and connect with it on a regular basis.

As you progress, you’ll learn how the universe communicates with you. It’ll feel like playing games of hide and seek as you learn how to ask your questions and receive your answers. 

You’ll realize you’re becoming better at meditation when it’s not just a means to an end, but an opportunity to go beyond yourself and connect with something greater. There’s a lot that can be said but if you approach your meditations with humility and intentional practice, I’m confident that the universe will take perfect care of you.

I hope you enjoyed reading this, and most importantly, I hope it answered some of your questions. I wish you the best on your meditation journey, and remember to have fun with it!