Mindfulness meditation is a very useful and practical skill to develop. It is a fundamental part of my life. I have been doing this practice for so long now that I forget just how ‘normal’ it is for me.
One way this shows up, is in where I do this practice. The traditional place is in a quiet spot at home for about twenty minutes, preferably in the morning.
But, when do I personally do it?
Yes, normally in the morning (after breakfast,) but also…
1. When I arrive somewhere in my car (and I am alone in the car,) I will park, switch off the engine and stay seated, close my eyes and centre for two/three minutes before exiting the car. (I don’t mind anymore who may be watching. The benefits far outweigh the exposure.) This is mandatory if I have been driving through peak traffic for an hour!
2. When I walk along the beach, I will always stop at a bench or rock and sit. Again, for a few minutes, close my eyes or often leave them open. You don’t need to close your eyes when you have a beautiful ocean expanse to let in!
3. When I first wake up in the morning, if I am not feeling 100% ready to jump out, I will stay in bed, sit up in bed (pillow up behind me for support) and meditate there immediately. I don’t wait for later in the morning.
4. Almost always in between each client – five to fifteen minutes.
5. Regularly if I am in a public toilet at a restaurant or cafe. It’s a great private place to just center a bit more for a few minutes.
6. Almost always in waiting rooms. (Again I don’t mind who might be looking, to me this is very normal now.) In fact it is not normal to not do it.
7. If I have been reading or on the computer for a long time and my brain feels heavy. It’s very easy to close my eyes for a few minutes, seated where I am.
Everyone should do this at work. It should be common acceptable practice. And I believe one day soon it will be. Why? Simply because the benefits are just huge.
There are more times and places, (on buses, on trains, in taxis) but that’s just a few off the top of my head. Basically anytime I have some time alone, I will close my eyes and center. Even a few minutes can do wonders to focusing you into the present moment and clear your excess thinking, as well as other benefits. The smart phone has eaten away at this centering space because we carry it everywhere. So it is even more important today to cultivate this habit.