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Practical Meditation According to Thich Nhat Hanh

Meditation has baffled a bunch of people who are semi-aware of the amazing effects it has on people but think that it’s not for them. They think that they need an immense amount of time and concentration to be able to achieve such a feat. But little do they know that there are many ways to sneak in a good and sustainable meditation practice for the common human being. We don’t all have to be monks or gurus to get started on a meditation practice. 

While Driving

The negative effects on the environment caused by using a car should be reason enough to limit our use of it. Being deliberate of why we’re using the car and not just for the sake of driving around will first and foremost keep us conscious of what we’re doing. It should be that important. And whenever we enter a car, sit and turn on the ignition, we always have our destination in mind. So, anything that hinders or delays it, like a stop sign or a red light is seen as a negative thing. We become impatient. A simple way to practice meditation is to use the red light as a call to be present. To breathe into the moment and see it as literally something asking you to “stop.” So, pause and observe your emotions. Focus on breathing and, before you know it, it’s green again. 

While Walking

Walking for the sake of walking and not to get somewhere. It is rare that we walk for the sole enjoyment of putting one foot in front of the other. Take a deep breath and be conscious of the number of steps it takes for you to cycle through a breath. Take three steps when you inhale and three when you exhale. Adjust according to the natural length of time it takes for you to breathe. It doesn’t have to be equal to each other. And while you’re at it, think happy thoughts and send it through your feet, as if each step was a kiss from you to the earth. Give it a try, get dressed in your best leggings and take a walk. 

While Answering the Phone

We are now glued to our phones and the times it does ring we get a little rattled. Before answering the phone, we wonder who it is that’s calling us and what the call is for. Will it be good or bad news? Why was it so important to call that an instant message wasn’t enough? So, we have a tendency to panic and answer the phone as quickly as possible. Stop and take your time to answer. Breathe and slow down after that first ring. Smile to yourself and breathe at the second ring. If anyone has something extremely important to say, they will surely wait for at least three rings. Third, ring, then you can pick up. With the calm, you’ve achieved and the soft smile on your lips the caller will feel your emotions through the line and will affect them too.
Try these simple ways to meditate and see how it can affect you today.

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