Learning to Focus: Making time for Meditation

 
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You want to meditate, I know you do, but life gets in the way. Setting aside time for meditation may be difficult. Start by setting a goal of how much time you’d like to spend meditating each day. Once you set your goal, you might want to begin with a lesser amount and slowly add more time each day. The next step is to find the time.

  1. The best time is right when you wake up in the morning after you’ve taken care of your body needs (drinking water, using the bathroom). If you can get out of bed and sit right back down to meditate, you will thank yourself for this decision later in the day.
  2. Meditate right after work or school. Use your meditation as a transition between your outside life and your home life. 
  3. Use your lunch break to practice meditation. Pretty soon eating lunch will remind you to meditate.
  4. Schedule it into an alert system. If you can set your phone or computer to alert you to meditate at a specified time every day it takes the remembering work away from you.
  5. Add meditation to your bedtime routine. Brush your teeth, wash your face, drink a glass of water and meditate.
  6. When you feel stress beginning to set in, stop it before it takes over. Meditate, take a few breaths, let it pass.
  7. When you are alone and doing methodical tasks, focus on your breathing. Tune out all external and internal distractions and just listen to your breath.
  8. Anytime you’re thinking about whether or not to meditate in that moment, just do. Sit down and spend the time quieting your body and your mind.
  9. Find shorter amounts of time throughout your day to add up to your goal meditation time. Five minutes right when you wake up, five when you eat lunch, five after work or school, and five before bed, that adds up to twenty minutes. While not perfect for every day, this is perfectly fine on your really busy days.

Allow your meditation schedule to be only a very gentle form of self-discipline. Some days you may only meditate briefly, or you may choose not to meditate at all. Remember that it is the pleasure of the practice, not the discipline, that leads you into self-introspection and self-awareness.

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Please share your own tips for finding time to meditate in a comment below.