Imagine this scene from a movie I saw recently: Fade in. The main character is frazzled. She is running from one meeting to another, schedule fully booked. Barely any time to go to the bathroom between meetings, let alone time to think. Her mind races almost as fast as her heart…desperately thinking about what she needs to be prepared for in the meeting she’s headed to (which she’s running five minutes late for).
She arrives at the meeting, apologizes for being late. As the meeting continues, instead of listening to the conversation, she’s still in her head, beating herself up for being late and missing the announcement shared at the start of the meeting…missing the discussion happening now. Oh the irony! Fade out. That character was me on the occasional day in my corporate career.
If this reminds you of some of your days, don’t worry. You don’t need an extra hour in the day, or 10. You just need a little mindfulness.
This week’s practice is to breathe and get into your body every time you walk to a meeting. Take a deep breath in, counting to three. Long exhale, counting to six. Long exhales stimulate our parasympathetic nervous (rest and digest) system. Feel your feet on the floor as you take each step. Notice if there is any tension in the body (shoulders, neck, jaw, back). Stretch to release the tension. Yes, you might get some weird looks in the hallway but you will arrive at your meeting calmer and more present. Guaranteed or your money back!
And if you want to take just five minutes to center and relax yourself during a hectic day or after a particularly stressful meeting, try the “Calm The Mind” practice here.
Wishing you a mindful week!
P.S. One-Minute Mindfulness are short reads that give you a practice a week so you can experience being mindful in the activities you’re already doing. If you’d like to create mindfulness habits with team members and friends, share this link for them to sign up.
P.P.S. I would love for you to share your experience or questions from this practice in the comments below.