Integrating meditation with a busy life can be the antidote to stress. Here are 3 easy steps from the founders of M Meditation, Tay and Val, to bring a little more mindfulness into your day-to-day.
If you’ve clicked on the article title to read this, it’s unlikely that you need to be convinced about the benefits of meditation. But since you’re reading this on the Pursuit’s Journal, you’re likely overwhelmed with your personal and professional to-dos, and might be wondering…
“How do I find the extra 10-20 minutes a day to sit and meditate?”
You’re not alone. In fact, the most common feedback we’ve heard from CEOs, project managers, artists, designers, engineers (overall really cool folks like yourself ;)) that we’ve taught, is that with their hectic schedules and demanding social lives, it’s really hard for them to “add one more thing to do” and find time for meditation.
Here’s the thing.
You don’t have to be meditating 20 minutes, twice a day.
You don’t have to find a quiet space and sit real straight.
You don’t even have to close your eyes…
… in order to get the benefits of meditation.
There’s a different, or rather — modern — way you can start to cultivate this powerful mind-training habit into your daily life.
1) Start with one: once a day, one technique, one minute at a time.
Like Sondra from Pursuit, we believe in overcoming the overwhelm with simplifying. In the case of meditation, some of us give up even before trying, because we’re daunted by the information overload when it comes to…
When is the best time for me to meditate?
What technique should I practice?
How long must I sit for this to work?
Start with one.
Meditate once a day, at a time that’s most inspiring (read: most convenient, easiest, no reason not to) to you. More about the time selection in the latter sections.
Start with one technique. A breathing meditation. A mantra meditation. A body scan meditation. Find one that you enjoy and stick with it for 3 weeks (the scientifically proven amount of time to start cultivating a habit); and then 3 months (the research-backed amount of time to integrate the habit into your lifestyle).
Meditate for one minute at a time. It’s rare for an individual to go from not meditating to a full twenty-minute sit. Now that you’ve decided when to meditate and which technique to use, start with one minute of practice a day. When your mind and body realizes the benefits of that one minute, you’ll naturally want to do more.
2) Same time, same place — always.
For example, 9AM ish at your work desk before you start work, every weekday. Consistency helps you nurture the behavior of meditation into a habit.
A habit forms through repetition of a behavior (i.e. meditation) in a stable context (e.g. 9 AM at your work desk before starting work).
When practicing meditation consistently at the same time and environment, you’re priming your brain and body to shift into meditation mode whenever you sit down at your desk to get to work.
(…if like us, you like to geek out over the science of this, google “context-behavior association”…)
3) Combo it, #IRL.
And finally, contextualize your meditation to your daily life. Make meditation a part of your life — literally — by combining it with a daily activity you already do. That way, you don’t feel like you have to carve out extra time for it, making it one more thing on your to-do list.
For example, take a moment to smell the aroma of your morning coffee and do a 1-minute gratitude meditation before you start work. Or count the steps with a breathing meditation between your work desk and your parked car. And an all time favorite of ours: Taking 3 deep breaths whilst waiting for the elevator.
Ready to meditate? Look out for Part II of this article series where we combined all the above 3 tips into simple and easy guided meditations that you can implement alongside your usual morning routine.
One last thing… “You’re doing it right.”
Just like physical training in the gym according to your body type, there are optimal ways to train your mind in meditation. But, there’s no wrong way to meditate.
Don’t let the need to get it right stop you from practicing.
If you’re doing it — whether you’re guided by a book, an audio recording, or even a TED talk — you’re doing it right.
If you’d like more guidance in your meditation, let’s practice together and connect #IRL at an upcoming M Meditation event. We like to combine seasonal themes and activities with meditation, to make it fun and applicable to your daily lives. Check our schedule and book your ticket here.
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Was this helpful? Tag a friend who can benefit from these tips here to share the article. We’ll randomly select a winner and gift you and your friend tickets to our next M Meditation event! Winner will be announced on June 20th.
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Tay & Val
Storytellers, community builders, change-agents, and purpose igniters. Everything we do seeks to inspire and is firmly grounded in intention.
We created M to help you lead your best life. Through themed meditation events, onsite workshops and offsite retreats, M is here to bring meditation to the masses. Modern meditation – backed by science, crafted with soul, secularized to be accessible and approachable to modern people. People like you.
Whether you’re a first-timer curious about meditation or a seasoned meditator looking to cultivate your practice — no matter your meditation experience — you’re invited to join us on an adventure with like-intended folks to explore and grow your meditation practice. Our awe-mazing community is waiting to welcome you.
See you at our next event!