Sometimes you just need to escape overwhelming negative thoughts or stress at work.
Here is how with some mini moments of meditation
For many people a quick escape for some peace may mean visiting the loo!
And why not? If you are at work, sometimes this is the only place for a bit of peace!
Workplace loos should not only be clean but peaceful! This is where you can go to have a moment of calm.
- You can focus on your breath without interruption.
- Wash your hands mindfully – which means you fully focus on what you are doing. This can help cool you down if things are getting too hot.
- Mindfully rub in some hand-cream to your hands.
- Look into the mirror at your eyes, and tell yourself, ‘I am strong. I am calm. All is well’, or make up some other affirmations or helpful mantras to repeat.
- You then re-enter life re-energised and back in balance.
Sitting on the side of the bath may not be the most comfortable place, but it can give you the freedom to focus on your breath, gain some clarity or escape noise.
Better still, a relaxing bath can give you that hour or so of ‘freedom’.
Here in the UK, we don’t call our loos ‘restrooms’ but it seems an appropriate title, what do you think?
Your car can be your place of serenity
The other most popular place for peace and quiet is your car. Your car can be your little sanctuary.
- Before you set off, sit for a moment and notice your breath, slow it down.
- Notice your posture – relax back onto the seat – too often it’s easy to dash off in the car, nose fixed up to the screen and shoulders hunched over the steering wheel.
- Sit upright but relaxed. Drop your shoulders. Get comfortable before setting off.
- Music – either have some relaxing classical music on, or switch if off altogether to allow peace and quiet in your space.
- If you are arriving at an important meeting, allow yourself a few moments in the car, to focus on your breath. Follow a few deep in-breaths to re-invigorate you after the journey, and follow a few out-breaths to allow yourself to release and let go of tension and fear.
Tips for your car as your sanctuary:
- Keep it clutter-free
- Wipe down your dashboard and steering wheel with fragrant-smelling wipes or disinfectant
- Keep a post-it note with the word ‘Mindful’ on the dashboard or somewhere where it will catch your eye and remind you to be fully present as you drive
Mini Moments of Meditation
With all of the above ideas, it’s only a second away from incorporating a mini moment of meditation.
You set aside everything else and focus on one thing. So whatever you choose to do – engaging your full attention to it, is a meditation. The outcome may be you feel more peaceful, more relaxed, more contented or simply more present.
In any of the locations above, and also at your work desk, by a window, sitting on a train, waiting for a bus, somewhere outside in the fresh air. Try taking a 3-step breather:
The 3-step breather
Step 1: Gather your scattered thoughts together to focus on your body. Notice all the tension you might be holding in your shoulders, neck, back and thighs. Let your body be still.
Step 2: As you have settled your body, you can then focus in on your breathing. Observe it like you might observe the ebb and flow of the tide as you sit by the sea. Allow the rhythm of your breath to soothe and calm you.
Step 3: Expand your focus so that with each breath you visualise your whole body is filling with replenishing and re-energising life-force. Every breath you take is doing just this – keeping every cell, muscle and organ in your body alive.
Remember this amazing experience of your body, your breathing and you being alive. Return into your day, with a better sense of aliveness!
When to take these mini moments of meditation
It gives you the space to be able to manage your relationships better. We may all have been irritable and snappy at times when we have let stress get the better of us.
Take a mini moment of meditation. It’s your choice!
And if you need more than the edge of the bath for some mindful meditation and you are struggling to find some time for yourself, you might like to sign up for our next 6 Week Mindfulness & Meditation Course or work face to face.
Warning: Moaning Mytrle in the Harry Potter series spent way too long in the bathroom. Avoid this – it’s not meditation, it’s hiding!
Yvette Jane – Mindfulness & Meditation Coach at Place of Serenity