Sometimes, during the day, we find ourselves caught in rumination, worry or boredom. The next time you have such a moment try this 3-minute meditation.
Step 1: Check-in
Deliberately adopt a wakeful posture. If possible, close your eyes or otherwise simply lower your gaze. Then ask yourself: What is my experience right now?
- What thoughts are going through your mind?
- What feelings are there?
- What body sensations are here right now?
Step 2: Focusing your attention
Now, direct the focus of your awareness to the physical sensations of your breath in the abdomen. Notice the abdominal walls rising with each inbreath and falling back again with each outbreath. Allow the breath to breathe itself. Use each breath as an opportunity to anchor yourself in the present. And whenever your mind wanders, gently escort the attention back to the breath in your belly region.
Step 3: Expanding your awareness
Now, expand the focus of your awareness to take in the whole body. Become aware of your posture, your facial expression, as if your whole body was breathing. If you become aware of any sensations of discomfort or tension, allow the focus of your awareness to move to that intensity in your body, imagining your breath could move into it and out from it again. And then return to being aware of your body as a whole.
When you are ready open your eyes again and return to whatever you did before.
You can shorten or expand this meditation as you wish. The first step though should not take longer than a minute. This meditation is not about analyzing but rather about becoming aware of what is going on and then bringing the focus of awareness first to the breath and then to the body.
(The Three-Minute Meditation has been adapted from MBCT.)