We are living in especially stressful times. Living in a culture of fear and uncertainty can wear on our bodies and spirits. We all grapple with personal issues, work responsibilities, and intense global concerns. Bosses can be demanding and finances may seem tight. How can we easily get some relief?
We all know that meditation can help us develop balance and clarity. However, the act of meditation can seem daunting and overwhelming. We may be thinking, how do I find the right teacher? Or, am I even doing this right? Even the thought of meditation can cause us additional stress. We already have a long “to-do” list to begin with, right?
I am here to share with you that meditation can be simple, short and effective. It can shift our perspective from one of anxiety and fear to that of calmness and compassion in a short period of time. This meditation practice can be done almost anywhere and all you need is a few minutes. To alleviate doubt and tension, follow these three simple steps.
Sit in a comfortable position, in a chair or on the floor, with a long, tall spine. Soften your shoulders and open your heart. Close your eyes and inhale through your nose as you mentally count from 1 to 5.
Hold the Breath
Now, hold the breath as you mentally count from 1 to 5 and maintain a tall spine. Eyes are still closed and soft. Relax the muscles in your face.
Slowly exhale through your nose as you count from 1 to 5. Repeat this cycle of breath for 3 minutes or more. After 3 minutes, open your eyes and take a few relaxing breaths. I have practiced this meditation in rush hour traffic (with eyes open, of course!), in a long line at the grocery store, and during my lunch break from work. This is also a great bedtime practice. You don’t need a fancy meditation cushion or a flowing scarf. You just need to be you and breathe.