Although there are some people fortunate enough to have a calm and relaxed schedule, most of us spend our days running around from one thing to the next. Unless you have a routine that allows you time to meditate (and you make time for it), you can easily find yourself considerably spent by the day’s end.
Dr. Claire Wheeler, author of the book 10 Simple Solutions to Stress, in this Psychology Today article, takes a look at how all of us could benefit from practices that help us to de-stress our lives.
According to Wheeler, meditation is important because it allows us to find the place a person can retreat to when in the grips of life’s ups and downs. Suggesting that a person get in the habit of doing daily micro-meditations as a way to relax, Wheeler outlines a quick and easy meditation for those on the go.
1. Stop what you’re doing, and find something lovely to look at. In my office, I have a window (lucky me!) so there’s always a tree being blown by a breeze, a glint of sunlight on grass, a new bud on a branch – or even a spider web. Without a window, there can be photographs of pets or children, pieces of art or objects from wonderful travels. Anything that catches your eye in a nice way will work.
2. Gaze at the pretty thing, and listen. Don’t analyze, just listen to the sounds around you. Stop listening to the voice in your head, and listen to the world around you. If you catch yourself identifying or evaluating a sound, move on to the next one.
3. Now smell. Breathe slowly and deliberately and see if you smell anything, again, without assessing it.
4. Now feel. Feel your body, the air circulating around you, the support of whatever you’re sitting on.
5. Now just float for a little bit on a sea of sensory awareness, veering gently away from all your mind’s attempts to categorize, assess, and capture anything. As you breathe, say to yourself breathing in, “Just,” and breathing out, “Be.”
6. Repeat for a few seconds, up to five minutes. Just. Be. Just. Be.
Read more from Wheeler on the benefit of a micro-meditation here.