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A daily meditation habit in 2 minutes a day.

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via Twitter I discovered this Leo Babauta advice on meditating:

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.

Summary of Leo's process for creating a "meditate daily" habit:

1. Commit to just 2 minutes a day. "Start simply if you want the habit to stick."

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."

3. Find a quiet spot. "It really doesn’t matter where — as long as you can sit without being bothered for a few minutes."

4. Sit comfortably. "Don’t fuss too much about how you sit, what you wear, what you sit on, etc. I personally like to sit on a pillow on the floor, with my back leaning against a wall, because I’m very inflexible... Any cushion or pillow will do, and some people can sit on a bare floor comfortably."

5. Start with just 2 minutes. This is really important:

"Most people will think they can meditate for 15-30 minutes, and they can. But this is not a test of how strong you are at staying in meditation — we are trying to form a longer-lasting habit. And to do that, we want to start with just a two minutes."

6. Focus on your breath. As you breathe in, follow your breath in through your nostrils, then into your throat, then into your lungs and belly:

"Sit straight, keep your eyes open but looking at the ground and with a soft focus. If you want to close your eyes, that’s fine. As you breathe out, follow your breath out back into the world. If it helps, count … one breath in, two breath out, three breath in, four breath out … when you get to 10, start over. If you lose track, start over. If you find your mind wandering (and you will), just pay attention to your mind wandering, then bring it gently back to your breath. Repeat this process for the few minutes you meditate. You won’t be very good at it at first, most likely, but you’ll get better with practice."

Leo adds: "And that’s it. It’s a very simple practice, but you want to do it for 2 minutes, every day, after the same trigger each day. Do this for a month and you’ll have a daily meditation habit."

For me, it takes two months to create a habit. So one month is halfway there.

See also: 60-second Meditation.


Habit cycle

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