Mini Meditations

Mini Meditations

April 13, 2013 |  by | Follow her on Twitter here | 

I move through life with grace and ease, and time expands to meet my needs.

A wise acquaintance once relayed that mantra—and it holds special significance in today’s fast-paced world. It may feel like you spend your days running from Point A to Point B without a spare minute to breathe! But a U Penn study shows that carving out a mere 12 minutes a day to do just that—intentionally breathe—can go a long way toward improving your mood. In addition, meditating can help you get better quality sleep, show more kindness towards others, and reduce inflammation!

Here are a series of mini meditations you can call on throughout your day when you’re feeling frazzled and need to find your center.

Greeting the Day: Set an Intention

Meet the day by sitting quietly in a chair with your feet firmly on the floor to ground you. Staring straight ahead, take three deep breaths and begin to envision the morning washing over you, taking with it any residual stress or anxiety that might be bubbling up. Pay close attention to your breath and visualize how the day will unfold for you, setting your positive intention. Stay centered in this space for a few more minutes, then stand and finish by standing and stretching your arms overhead; or, if you like, do one sun salutation.

Commuting with Consciousness: Let Go

To avoid the bubbling of negative emotions that often come with a traffic-packed ride to work, return to your breath and tune into your senses. Every time a negative emotion bubbles up, acknowledge it, release it, and focus on something that ignites your senses; i.e.: the grounded feeling of sitting or the smell of fresh air coming through the window.

Midday Mindfulness: Practice Discipline

When you sit down to eat lunch, do it with intention and resist the urge to gulp it down and get on with your work. Carve out 20 minutes to sit quietly and focus on your meal. Say a small prayer of gratitude for the food you are about to enjoy and make a point of chewing each bite and breathing in between. You’ll also want to make a point of purposely putting your utensils down on occasion. Eating in this manner requires discipline, but it helps you find a restorative center to your day.

Bedtime Sequence: Show Yourself Compassion

As you get ready to go to bed, try this calming ritual, which is especially beneficial if your mind has a tendency to race. Lie on your back and take several deep breaths through your nose and out your mouth. Starting with your feet and moving up to your head, check in with all the points of your body, noticing any sensations, moving them slightly, and consciously releasing any tension you are holding. It’s unlikely you’ll make it as far as your head before you’ve drifted off to a deep sleep.

Photo credit: “An offering of beauty” © 2006 mckaysavage, used under a Creative Commons Attribution license


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  1. Oh, how I loved this post! I used to listen to NPR on my 10 minute commute to work. Now I chant Sanskrit for luck, abundance and happiness. It is such a nice way to start the day and to there’s it looks like I am singing to the radio. It is my secret.

  2. I don’t meditate as often as I should but I do meditate a couple of times a day. That alone helps me keep my balance. It is so important.

  3. When I became interested in meditation as a way to battle depression, I began using most of these meditations, and still use them today. They really do refresh you and relax you when you need them to.

    I began using the Midday Mindfulness meditation at all three mealtimes several years ago when I began eating the Macrobiotic diet. With each bite, you lay down your utensils and focus on chewing the food 20-30 times and breathing. Not only does it help you enjoy your food more, it aids with proper digestion, too.

    • Absolutely, Angie. Taking time to chew your food is such a small but significant change you can make to your overall health. Your digestion improves, but you also get to practice gratitude with every mouthful and it makes the food taste that much sweeter.

      I’m so glad you found meditation to help you feel relaxed and refreshed. When I stray from meditation, I end up feeling pretty frayed. That’s why I love these mini meditations — they are so short, I have no excuse to not do them!

  4. Hi Wendy

    People always think that they have to spend hours in meditation when mini meditations are worth their weight in gold. Of course, our life should be just one meditation, but in the absence of achieving that, mini meditations are a great way to bring us back to our centre!

    Thanks for the reminder of how simple they can be :)

  5. Thank you for these! I meditate every morning and try to in the evening too. Sometimes at night it can be hard to clear your mind but with your bedtime sequence it seems so easy to make night time a habit too.

    • I’m glad this was helpful, Susan! My struggle is in the morning; I often just want to plunge into my day so I am recommitting to getting grounded in the a.m. starting this week…

  6. What a beautiful reminder, thank you :) I used to “segment intend” (Abraham-Hicks version of these) and somehow got out the habit. Now I know I want to take it up again!

  7. I love reminders to slow down…throughout the entire day. It’s so important and so easy to lose track of. Thanks for so many ideas Wendy!

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