It’s easy for hours, days, weeks or even years to slip away unless we pay deliberate attention to the choices we make. Our world has become so over-stimulated and full of distractions that you, like many others, feel that time “gets away” from you even quicker than in the past.
Meditation is a proven technique for empowering you to lead a more intentional life, and enjoying more of what your life has to offer. Here are four meditations that will help focus your attention so you can enjoy more happiness and success in your life.
Meditating On Slowing Down
1. Create a peaceful setting. You can create a serene meditation space wherever you live – in a home, and apartment or studio. Pick a corner in your bedroom or living room. Clear away clutter and put down a comfortable and supportive cushion or chair. Darken the room slightly and light a candle or burn incense to support your intentions.
2. Relax your body. Take deep, cleansing breaths. Scan your body from head to foot. Sit up straight and use your abdominals for support. Lower your shoulders and loosen any tension spots. Close your eyes or hold them slightly open.
3. Quiet your mind. Observe your thoughts without pursuing them or getting too focused on one thought. Gradually turn your attention to your breath. Count your breaths if it helps you settle down and relax into your meditative time.
4. Streamline your schedule. Bring your new sense of ease into your daily routine. Pare down your to do list, getting rid of non-essentials and stress-inducers where possible. Give your full attention (and your energy) to one activity at a time.
Meditating On Setting Specific Goals
1. Define a meaningful life. Consider what a meaningful life means to you. Think about what achievements bring you the greatest satisfaction.
2. Target priority areas. Identify what you feel most passionate about. You may want to spend more time with your family or advance your career. Maybe you want to go back to school or take up a new hobby.
3. Visualize where you want to go. Picture what you want your life to be like in a year or five years from now. Start setting short term goals that will make your new path a reality, and set your plan in motion.
4. Be flexible. Life is full of surprises, challenges, and enriching opportunities. Be prepared for obstacles and detours. View them as opportunities for learning and growth, and not as plan-ending failures.
Meditating On Repetition
1. Consider the value of strategic repetition. Progress usually requires persistence – effort over a longer period of time, no matter what. Make a commitment to being diligent and consistent. Look forward to how good you’ll feel when the behaviors you desire become automatic, which can occur within 21 – 28 days.
2. Identify new habits you want to adopt. Decide to adopt behavior tendencies that are good for you. If you’ve been watching television to relax after work, come up with a list of alternatives like taking a walk or playing ball with your kids instead.
3. Create an immediate action plan. Figure out how to implement your resolutions right away – remember, Baby Steps forward are still steps forward! Sometimes it helps to take it one day (one minute, one hour) at a time and give yourself strategic rewards to positively reinforce your motivation. Writing out your plans will clarify them in your mind. You can also post your resolutions and re-read them daily as a reminder to stick to them.
Meditating On Evaluation
1. Review your progress. Once you start living more deliberately, keep track of your positive results. Use your meditation time to gauge how things are going and where you want to improve.
2. Reflect on your daily activities. Look at the situations where you succeed in becoming more deliberate and the times when you falter. Try to find the triggers that help to keep you on course.
3. Listen to feedback from other motivated people. Other people can give us valuable insights into our own conduct. Use praise, criticism and reactions from others as resources to help you develop.
4. Refine your resolutions. Becoming more deliberate is a lifelong process. Schedule ongoing reviews to make mid course corrections and to stay up to date with your changing needs.
If you feel like you’re just drifting through life, take control by becoming more intentional. Meditations that train you to become more deliberate will help you identify your personal priorities and get the results you want.