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Essential Habit 3 of 3 - Meditation.

Updated: Mar 2, 2020

Just as exercise and nutrition are essential to your body, meditation is an essential practice for your mind. Not meditating has a lot of negative effects on your mind just as removing exercise and healthy nutrition would have on your body. Because meditation deals with the mind or the “soul” there is a lot of spirituality talk that surrounds it. If you are interested in such topics I have some reading recommendations at the end of this article, but for the purpose of this blog, I stick to the simple and pragmatic things. So let’s get into it.

Meditation is a technique that teaches and helps your mind to accomplish a couple of useful things:

• Regulate Stress.

• Manage strong emotions.

• Control your general mood.

• Improve focus and concentration.

• Improve willpower.

I am far from being an expert on meditation and there are also various types of it that accomplish different things. What is specifically applicable to your case is really up to you to discover. Here’s the TL;DR version of how to meditate.

1. Set a timer for however long you want to meditate. For beginners, I recommend 5 or 10 minutes.

2. Sit comfortably either on a chair, bed or straight surface. Keep your back as straight as you can while still being comfortable.

3. Take a few deep breaths, relax and close your eyes

4. Bring your attention to your breath and the movement of your body as air goes in and out of your lungs. This can mean focusing on the rhythm of your chest and shoulders rising and falling, your belly inflating, the feeling of the air rushing past your nostrils, or anything else you notice.

5. When you realize your mind wandered simply bring your attention back on the breath.

Practice this. At first, you will realize that your mind wanders quite often and you spend a lot of your time thinking about different things, but as you keep practicing it your focus will improve and you will be able to keep longer and longer stretches of your attention where it matters: on the breath. At first, you might not feel any different after your meditation, but just like exercise the more you keep at it the more obvious the benefits become.

Meditation can be done at any point during the day whenever you feel most comfortable doing it. However, to have the best effect I recommend implementing it in a morning routine. This will ensure that you always start your day relaxed, with a clear head and that the short 10 minutes that you spent meditating in the morning will have ripple effects throughout the day affecting everything you do.

A morning routine is simply the first couple of things that you do in the exact same way when you wake up. The reason morning routines are so powerful is because they are very easy to make into a habit and they set the tone for the rest of the day. If you ingrain powerful habits as part of your morning routine such as making your bed, meditating and exercising, your days will be infinitely more yielding and productive.

We have now covered all three essential habits that in my opinion are an absolute necessity to living a happier and more fulfilled life. Of course, these are not miracle habits in the sense that they will not change your life in themselves. They will, however, give you the momentum, time and energy to focus on the things that will. These habits are simply stepping stones towards the things that truly matter to you.

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