The practice of meditation is life transforming and it’s possible to do in the workplace! When your schedule doesn’t allow for a full-blown mat practice, you can still quiet your mind. Start by following these 5 easy steps.
1. Start small. Just as you would train your physical muscles, your mental muscles have similar phases of development. Practicing even 3 minutes of stillness can feel like a long time when you first start meditating, so do whatever you can.
2. Do it your own way. Don’t feel confined by strict practices like sitting. If you can get outdoors or over to an indoor track, try a 10-minute walking meditation. Pay attention to each of the following: the physical sensations of your body walking; the flow of your breath; the sensations of air, wind and gravity on your body; what you hear; what you can see.
3. Meditate with purpose. It seems ironic, but meditation is a very active process. The art of focusing your attention on a single point is difficult, and it really helps the process to be purposefully engaged with what you are doing. Although there’s no need for repetitive mantras or forceful objectives, it is nice to have a positive intention for each day (even if it’s “I really need to relax.”)
4. Watch your attention. Your biggest block to meditation is yourself or, more specifically, your mind. This is great news for success because you can control your mind. If you notice yourself getting caught up in a train of thought that pulls you strongly from the present moment, simply bring your attention back to your breath. This truly gets easier with practice.
5. Remember: The practice is a process. Be compassionate with yourself when your mind drifts so as not to discourage your progress. Pretty soon you’ll be able to meditate anytime, anywhere, regardless of circumstance or environment.
Try this yoga pose for a moving meditation.