Likutei Moharan II 25 is one of the primary lessons of the Rebbe about Hitbodedut.
One of the issues which the Rebbe discusses in that lesson is someone who tries to make Hitbodedut but can’t find anything to say. The Rebbe teaches us that the fact that he prepared himself and set aside a time and place for his personal prayer is also very special, even if he can’t get a prayer out.
This is one of the Rebbe’s teachings which the evil inclination tries very hard to keep us away from following.
Basically everyone who appreciates Rebbe Nachman and his teachings and is aware of the importance of Hitbodedut most probably has a feeling for it. What could be more appealing and natural than knowing that for one hour every day I can discuss with G-d everything that’s on my mind and heart? What could be more uplifting and consoling than to be able to pour out all my feelings before the One who understands and cares about me the most?
But what about those days when I don’t have what to say? What about those hours of Hitbodedut which instead of being filled with an intimate conversation with the Almighty, ends up being occupied by daydreaming and spacing out? Wouldn’t it be better at those times to find something else to do which is more productive?
Rebbe Nachman reveals to us otherwise: Just to sit before G-d for an hour in a set place at a set time, with the intention of having a conversation with Him, that alone is very special. Even if you end up not having anything to say, dozing off, spacing out, you name it. It’s still wonderful.
You showed up for the appointment. That’s amazing. Appreciate that about yourself.
Appreciate the fact that you’ve secluded yourself before G-d. That alone is also special.
Many people find it too difficult to begin with one hour. Although Rebbe Nachman did recommend that specific amount of time, most people will find it easier to begin with five minutes or ten minutes, and slowly proceed. Secondly, it is certainly very valuable to make hitbodedut for less then an hour. This is not an all of nothing situation, just that there is a certain valuable advantage in the hour time frame. Nevertheless, one should be happy the entire day that he merited to make hitbodedut for whatever period of time.