These days, the number one excuse not to do anything is, “I don’t have the time,” and meditation is no exception. A lot of people say they want to start practicing meditation but they just simply can’t squeeze it into their ultra-busy schedule. The reason people assume they don’t, or won’t, have time to meditate is because they’re looking at it the wrong way. Meditation is not sitting on the floor in a dark room with your eyes closed for 20, 30, 40 minutes, etc… It can be, but it can also be practiced in a myriad of other ways.
Here are some common places you might find yourself in everyday that can be used as an opportunity to practice mindfulness:
Stuck in Traffic
Whether you’re waiting at a red light or stuck in bumper-to-bumper rush hour traffic on the freeway, you’ve got a great opportunity to squeeze in some mindfulness meditation. I know what you’re thinking… “Isn’t that dangerous?” Yes, it is if you close your eyes. Don’t close your eyes! That’s not the kind of meditation I’m talking about in this scenario. When you find yourself in this scenario, you’re going to do the opposite of spacing out; you’re going to focus on the present moment. All you have to do is take the opportunity to focus on your breathing and calm down. Remember, there’s no rush; the light will change; the traffic will start moving again. Just focus on your breathing and be patient.
On a bus? On the subway? A train, perhaps? Whenever you’re using any mode of public transportation, you have an excellent opportunity to meditate. First of all, you’re not the one steering the vehicle, so it’s perfectly acceptable to go off into your own world. Second of all, why wouldn’t you want to drown out everything happening around. This is a great time to let your mind wander in any direction it pleases, or just focus on your breathing and let the time pass.
In The Shower
You probably take a shower at least once a day, and it’s the perfect time and place to practice mindfulness meditation. What makes the shower, or bathtub; such a great place to practice mindfulness is that there is so much to be mindful of. Obviously, and foremost, there is the temperature of the water and the sensation of it on your skin. You can also take notice of the smell of the soap and the sound of the running water. Showering is not a chore, it is a gift.
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