Meditation and Adderall

I probably don’t have to tell you that Adderall is an amphetamine - though it’s marketed to slow down your mind, it is actually a powerful stimulant. The manufacturer says it “can cause rapid or irregular heartbeat, delirium, panic, psychosis, and heart failure.” This is not what you want to sit on when you meditate.

So what is it like to meditate when you’re taking Adderall? It’s a continual battle between sleepiness and agitation: falling asleep and then feeling like you have to jump up and do something. There is very little of the in-between state of calm alertness.

Your nervous system is over-stimulated so it makes you hyper-active, until you shut down from overload, which you must do because the drug has increased central nervous system activity without increasing the bandwidth to handle it .

With Heart Rhythm Meditation, you can control many aspects of the sympathetic and para-symphatic nervous system. It’s far more effective than pharmaceuticals, and you’re in control of yourself.

Not all meditations are effective for ADD. You need to increase your Vagal Tone, which is the index of the effectiveness of your vagus nerve at delivering the “slow down” signal to the organs of your body. The meditation method you need has to increase your “Heart Rate Variability (HRV),” the result of good vagal tone. This is the specialty of Heart Rhythm Meditation. You can get a HRV monitor and track your progress. See Heart Rate Variability with HRM

Learn Heart Rhythm Meditation and practice it, and wean yourself off Adderall. You can’t have real meditation of any kind as long as this heavy-duty stimulant is in your blood, but you can get enough of the benefits to replace the drug over a short time. After it’s out of your system, you’ll have great meditation experiences, without ADD.

Virtually all of my students have stopped their medications, even meds that they were told they would have to take for the rest of their lives.

In the specific case of ADD, the problem is that your mind is stronger than your heart. Your mind, everyone’s mind, is like a wild horse. What controls the mind is the heart’s interest, passion, and love. If you strengthen your heart, it can hold the reins of your mind, slow it down, and lead it anywhere.

We say, “You never have to remind the lover to think of his beloved - her face is everywhere he looks.” Imagine if you could direct your attention like that, holding it on any object you desire, as long as you want. That’s what your heart can do for you.

Blessings on your meditations,

Puran Bair 
Chancellor, The University of the Heart


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