Everyone has probably heard about the benefits of meditation more than once. She is helps cope with insomnia and anxiety, stabilize blood pressure, improve attention, prevent age-related memory loss. However, not everyone likes or finds it difficult to sit in one position for a long time. Here are some simple practices that won’t take long.
1. Meditation in the shower
You don’t have to set aside extra time for it. You just need to go to the shower, as usual, and turn on the water. And then – try to concentrate on your feelings.
Listen to the sound of water, feel how many drops touch your skin and flow down – follow them from the top of your head to your heels. Feel how the jets warm and relax you, or, on the contrary, invigorate and relieve morning stiffness.
Yoga Instructor Shannon Irizarri offers go further and imagine that the water washes away from you and takes away bad moods, heavy thoughts and feelings, illnesses and fatigue.
2. Meditate on the go
It can be done while walking or even on the way to work (if you get there on foot). The ideal conditions for walking meditation are a flat road without obstacles, somewhere in nature or in a park. If it is difficult to find one, try to choose a place where you can walk straight for at least 5 minutes without stopping at pedestrian crossings.
The object of meditation in this case is your steps. It is much easier to focus on them than, say, on the breath, as in mindfulness meditation. You just walk in a straight line at a pace that is comfortable for you and keep your every movement in focus.
Here the right leg rose, slightly bent at the knee, touched the ground. The left one did the same. Here hands sway involuntarily. If you find it difficult to keep your attention, try counting the steps: first from one to 10, and then in the opposite direction – and so on in a circle. Or say to yourself: “right-left, right-left.” Continue meditation for as long as you feel comfortable.
Maybe a little complicate practice and in the process of walking, shift the focus from steps to other objects: sounds, smells, your own breathing.
3. Slow meditation
Whatever you do, try to do it a few times slower and focus on each movement. You can practice this type of meditation while eating, walking, cleaning, or generally at any time convenient for you. It is not necessary to slow down for a long time – just a few minutes will suffice.
During lunch, it will look like this: you slowly put a plate on the table, bring the fork to your mouth, chew food thoughtfully, analyzing its taste, smell and texture. By the way, this practice, if used during meals, will not only help you become calmer and more conscious, but will also prevent you from overeating.
This term proposed psychologist and science journalist Daniel Goleman in his book. We are talking about short meditation sessions of a couple of minutes, which may not be compared with a full-fledged practice, but will still help you become calmer and more aware. Here are some micro-meditation options you can try.
Cover your eyes. Take a few deep breaths and exhale and begin to breathe in a rhythm that is comfortable for you, focus on the process of breathing and your feelings. Count the breaths from one to 10 and repeat in reverse order.
Body sensation analysis
Close your eyes and smoothly move your attention to different parts of the body, from the top of your head to your toes. Focus on the sensations: you may feel warmth or throbbing, or you may feel pain, itching, or stiffness. Try not to miss a single part of the body, direct your attention to the nose, eyebrows and ears, to the shoulder blades and lower back, to each finger and toe. Usually this whole process does not take more than 5 minutes.
Breathing in fours
Inhale, count to four, hold your breath, and count to four again. Exhale – also for four counts. Repeat this cycle at least 10 times.
5. Meditation on paper
You will need a sketchbook and a pen (or felt-tip pen). You can take a few different colors if you like. All you need to do is open the album and start tracing the paper with a pen.
In any direction and absolutely free. Focus on the movements of the hand, on the line that appears on the paper, on the sounds that the felt-tip pen or pencil makes. Do not think about the result and do not try to draw something beautiful.
Most likely, you will get just scribbles: a chaotic set of circles, triangles and other geometric shapes. But it doesn’t matter, you don’t draw, you meditate.