13 Surprising Places and Times I Use to Meditate
One of the best things I have ever done in my life is learn to meditate. It literally has changed my life for the better. I am happier, calmer, more mindful and better able to concentrate and focus. My daily practice entails meditating every morning soon after I wake up. However, I have also learned to supplement this with meditation throughout the day at some unusual places and at unexpected times.
Here are some places and activities that I use to meditate at that may surprise you:
1. In Airports
Airports are a perfect place to meditate, regardless if you are the one traveling or waiting to pick someone up. I use the spare waiting time to spend a few minutes focusing on my breath. This could be at the check-in line, at the gate, while going through security, etc.
2. In an Airplane or Train
Since I travel often, I make it a habit of meditating on the airplane or train that I am traveling in. It helps the time pass faster and it helps me relax.
3. In the Car
Most of us spend a tremendous amount of time in an automobile. Believe it or not, the car can be a great place to meditate. I focus on my breath while waiting at a stop light or while waiting in traffic. It is a great stress reliever and a great use of the extra time.
4. In Bed
Another great place to meditate is in bed. I often meditate in bed before I sleep. It relaxes me and helps me fall asleep faster. I often find that it also helps me get a more restful sleep.
5. In a Waiting Room
All of us spend time in waiting rooms, whether it is as the doctor, the bank, the dentist, etc. I find this to be a perfect time to meditate. I sit comfortably in a chair and focus on my breathing while waiting.
6. In the Gym
A great place to meditate is the gym. Very often, while resting in between sets of weightlifting, I use the time to meditate. I also sometimes meditate while doing cardio exercise on the elliptical machine or treadmill rather than watching TV or listening to music.
7. In the Restroom
This may surprise you, but the restroom is a good place to meditate, especially since all of us use it daily. It is a great use of the extra time.
8. Sitting in the Dentist Chair
I have to admit that, like many, I am not a big fan of visiting the dentist. However, I now use the time sitting in the dentist chair to meditate while my teeth are being worked on. Focusing on my breathing makes me calmer, helps me relax, and allows the time to seem to pass faster.
9. Standing in Line
Standing in line at the bank, at an airport, at the post office, in the mall, etc, is part of life. I use this time to meditate. It is a wonderful stress reliever and, because most of us spend a substantial amount of time waiting in line, it is a good way to to use the time wisely, especially for those who are generally impatient.
10. In the Shower
I generally shower twice a day and often meditate while doing so. Rather than doing breathing meditation, I focus my attention on the water as it envelops my body, the feeling of warm water on my skin, even the scent of the soap and the sensation of soap suds. I stay present and enjoy the moment.
11. While Brushing My Teeth
Similar to the shower, I also meditate while brushing my teeth. I notice the sensations in my mouth, the way the toothbrush bristles feel against my teeth and gums, the taste of the minty toothpaste, etc. It helps me to stay focused on what I am doing rather than letting my mind wander.
12. While Eating
Mindful meditation while eating is a wonderful way to enjoy a meal. I have learned to focus my attention on the way the food looks, smells and tastes. Rather than rush through my meal, I focus on the present and enjoy all the nuances of my food. It greatly enhances my experience and I really enjoy my meal.
13. While Walking
When I am outside walking, I often spend a few minutes to focus on what I am doing. I notice my foot touching the ground, my other foot in the air, the impact of the ground, the rhythm of my stride, the feeling in my knees and the rest of my body, etc. The whole point is to stay present and focus on the walking.
As you can see, meditation is not limited to sitting in the lotus position once a day. There are many other opportunities to meditate throughout the day that will help you relax, stay focused and keep you grounded. I am constantly discovering new opportunities to meditate and I encourage you to do the same.