One of the most common reasons people say they don’t meditate is because they don’t have time. As meditation teachers suggest, if you don’t have the time to meditate, you’re probably someone who needs it the most. Avid meditators often say that they don’t have time not to meditate since this is one of the only times of the day where their mind truly has a break.
There are so many ways to implement short, effective mindfulness practices throughout the day that will help you find peace of mind. Try these techniques if sitting down for 15 minutes to meditate isn’t your thing:
Get Your Zen on in the Driver’s Seat
Close your eyes and take three deep belly breaths every time you get out of the car.
Everyone has time for this one. When you close your eyes, you help your nervous system reset while bringing your mind into the present moment. Combined with three long, slow and deep breaths into your stomach, this technique will get you into a meditative state every time you leave your car.
The S.T.O.P. method
Whenever you feel yourself moving into fight-or-flight mode try S.T.O.P:
Take a breath
Proceed with compassion
When your thoughts get the best of you, stop whatever you’re doing and come back to your breath, observe what’s going on and start to ask questions like, “Is this really as bad as I think?” Then, once you’ve calmed down, move forward in a way that honors your needs.
Come Back to Your Senses
Often, when we’re panicking or worrying, we’re only living within the mind. This negates the other 90 percent of our being. Locate five things you can see, four things you can feel, three things you can hear and one you can touch. Focus all of your attention on these as you land back into your body and the present moment.
Pretend One breath is Your Last on Earth
Not meant to be morbid or dramatic, this technique brings you instantly into the moment. Take the deepest breath you can, inhaling the essence of everything that’s around you. This one meditative moment, scattered a few times throughout your day, can even be more effective than one long meditation in the morning.
Try a Kundalini Mudra
Kundalini is a technology that helps you connect with yourself by using mantra and movement. Try out the mantra SA – TA – NA – MA while tapping your thumb to each finger as you say them out loud or in your head. So, tap the thumb to the index finger on SA, thumb to the middle finger on TA, thumb to the ring finger on NA and thumb to the pinky on MA. These are pressure points within the body that will help you relax while the sound current of the mantra soothes the energy around you. Try this for up to eleven minutes.