The habit of meditation is one of the most powerful things you’ll ever learn. Amazingly, it’s also one of the most simple habits to do — you can do it anywhere, any time, and it will always have immediate benefits.
While many people think of meditation as something you might do with a teacher, in a Zen Center, it can be as simple as paying attention to your breath while sitting in your car or on the train, or while sitting at the coffee shop or in your office, or while walking or showering. There’s no excuse for not doing it!
Why create a small daily meditation practice? There are countless reasons, but here are the most popular ones:
- It relieves stress and helps you to relax.
- When you practice mindfulness, you can carry it out to everyday life.
- Mindfulness helps you to savor life, change habits, live simply and slowly, be present in everything you do.
- Meditation has been shown to have mental benefits, such as improved focus, happiness, memory, self-control, academic performance and more.
- Some research on meditation has indicated that it may have other health benefits, including improved metabolism, heart rate, respiration, blood pressure and more.
Most simply, sitting for just a few minutes of meditation is an oasis of calm and relaxation that we rarely find in our lives these days. And that, in itself, is enough.
How to Do It Daily
There are lots and lots of ways to meditate. But our concern is not to find a perfect form of meditation — it’s to form the daily habit of meditation. And so our method will be as simple as possible.
1. Commit to just 2 minutes a day. Start simply if you want the habit to stick. You can do it for 5 minutes if you feel good about it, but all you’re committing to is 2 minutes each day.
2. Pick a time and trigger. Not an exact time of day, but a general time, like morning when you wake up, or during your lunch hour. The trigger should be something you already do regularly, like drink your first cup of coffee, brush your teeth, have lunch, or arrive home from work.