Repeat after me: the goal of meditation is not to stop the mind from thinking.

Make this your goal and you are sure to fail. (And be mean to yourself along the way.)

It is the nature of the mind to think. We think upwards of 12,000 thoughts a day (that’s 1,000 or more an hour!).

Meditation helps us strengthen our attention muscle so we don’t chase the thoughts like a puppy but instead can stay with ourselves in the present. Which is where we have a choice.

Interestingly, in meditation, thoughts can actually be one of the ways the body is releasing stress.*

A thought in meditation is simply inviting you to into your practice. This is the very moment where you are rewiring your brain to be more resilient by choosing to notice the thought and return consciously to the present moment. There are many tools which bring us back, the breath is one of them.

Try this week’s guided audio meditation to detangle your thinking.

UntangleThoughts_week 2

Building our attention muscle in meditation we are more capable of noticing the painful thoughts as they emerge in daily life and creating a little distance from them. Which is how we grow our sense of freedom + agency in the face of life circumstance. Thoughts often position us as a victim.

Come home to the present and you remind yourself that you have capacities to respond creatively to life.

You are on your own hero’s journey.

What are some of your recurrent painful thoughts?

What are some of the painful thoughts you encounter regularly in your social context? Often people share their painful thoughts with each other without realizing. Rather than drinking in another’s anxiety… could you return to your breath and meet your friend or coworker with compassion even as you choose not to internalize their pain? This is a fresh form of thought leadership.

And Now Choose Your Commitment!

Take a moment right now, a few breaths, close your eyes and feel into your body. What is the right commitment for you?

Could you do this thought dissolving meditation for 10 minutes every day?

Or maybe 3 times a week? Or just once right now?

Share Your Commitment Leave a comment below. What you share may be just the inspiration another needs to hear. Share it with a friend or on social media. (Connect with me on Facebook. And don’t forget to use #summerofmeditationchallenge so I can find + read all about your experience.)

Until next week… where we will have fun with lovingkindness. xo Courtney

PS Read on for details about my recent Soulpreneur retreat and an upcoming group coaching option for Soulpreneurs.

*For more on this theme check out Sarah McClean’s book Soul-Centered.


We had such a beautiful gathering of heart-led entrepreneurs out at Shooting Star Ranch this week. Hearing all of the women’s stories about their businesses or dreams of businesses I felt like I used to feel back when I was a doula — each birth a brush with the holy. So too these dreams struck me as sacred and powerful. Women heeding that voice of wisdom which calls them to step out on their own, to create a container through which they can contribute their unique gifts to the world. If you are interested in this conversation please stay tuned about a new Soulpreneur MasterMind (a group coaching package) I’ll be starting next month. So much more to share about that. Details coming.

After the event was over I was cleaning up and sat down to enjoy a late lunch. This beauty ambled up to me and we shared a moment. Each of us chewing and held by the hush of the green forest around us. It was one of those moments where I felt deeply witnessed and grateful to life for its magic.



Summer of Meditation Challenge 2016

Come on in. Feel the fresh and verdant air. Let’s detox your brain and nervous system so new ideas and iterations of you can bloom!

Join 500+ people from around the country who have participated in this free, 8 week online program to start or deepen a regular meditation practice. Enter your email into the box below to receive a weekly email with my favorite guided meditation practices + videos with tips for how to integrate them into real life. The Challenge starts Friday June 17th.

Xo Courtney

Photo Nov 12, 6 14 05 PMCourtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life and leadership coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School, is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living. Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram, meditation, and MindBody practices as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives. She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. Courtney can be reached at