Here are two mindfulness meditations you can try, the three minute breathing space and the mindfulness of breathing meditation.
Three-minute breathing space is like a little pill you can use at any moment, especially when you don’t have time for a longer meditation. It is a great way to reconnect with the present moment, increase self-awareness or as an emergency meditation, ready for use when you are under pressure. It can be done anywhere, in the office, on the metro, in a cafè: sitting, standing or even lying down (try not to fall asleep though). There are three steps of roughly one minute each.
Check in with yourself. Bring your awareness to your inner experience by asking yourself , ”What is going on with me at the moment?”. Notice your thoughts, your feelings and your body sensations. Don’t try to change them, just become aware of them.
Gently focus your full attention on to your breath. Experience fully each in-breath and each out-breath as they follow each other. The breath can function as an anchor to bring you fully into the present and to help you tune into a state of awareness and stillness.
Expand your awareness around the breathing to your whole body, and the space it takes up. Notice your body breathing and becoming aware of any sensations.
You can think of this as an hour-glass, wide focus, followed by narrow focus followed by wide focus.
Mindfulness of breathing is usually done sitting down. You can do this meditation for as long as you
like, 5, 10, 15, 20 minutes or more. A number of free meditation timing apps are available to help you track the time.
Sitting with your back in an erect but comfortable position and your shoulders softened. Close your eyes if it feels comfortable. Bring your awareness to the sensations in your body by focusing your attention on feelings of touch, contact or pressure, where your body is in contact with the seat or what ever your are sitting on. Take a few moments to notice these sensations. Now, bring your attention to your breath, each in-breath and each out-breath. Perhaps noticing your abdomen, as it rises and falls with your breathing. Keep the focus on your breathing, staying with each in-breath and each out-breath for its full duration. Every time you notice that you mind has wandered off, softly notice where your mind has gone and then gently accompany your attention back to your belly and the feeling of the breath as it comes in and out. Minds wander, that is what they do, it’s not a mistake or an error, just become aware that your mind has wandered and gently bring your attention back to the breath. Simply keep brining your attention back to your breath, your anchor, that is always with you.
Article by Pamela Maguire
CFM Qualified MBSR teacher, Certified Professional Business Coach,
Behaviour Change Specialist & Lecturer.
The next MBSR courses in English will begin in February in zona Moscova in Milan. For more details, contact:MBSRMilanEnglish@gmail.com