“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless – like water. Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, you put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.” ~Bruce Lee
Meditation is slow to reach the mainstream. It is still associated with gurus, yoga, granola, and hippies. We tend to shy away from things unfamiliar. But, there’s really no mystery to it. “Meditation” is just one word, a word that describes an act–the act of sitting still, with eyes closed, while observing your breath. That’s it! None of these acts by themselves has ever faced a stigma. Have you ever sat still? Have you ever closed your eyes? Have you ever notice your breathing?
If you answered “Yes” to any or all of these questions, you are a good candidate for meditation! In fact, from here on, I’m not going to refer to it as meditation. I’m going to refer to it as what it is: Observing Breath with Shut Eyes while Sitting Still (O.B.S.E.S.S.). Oh, wait. That didn’t come out well. How about Sitting Still with Eyes Closed while Observing Breath (SSECOB). Not as pretty as “meditation”, but I don’t want to scare anybody away.
Let’s be honest. When you’re stressed, the hardest thing to do is SSECOB. But, it is one of the best remedies for stress and is also helpful in preventing it. I find that when I discipline myself to SSECOB regularly, I make better decisions, am less forgetful, and I feel guided–like a stream of water–by my thoughts.
Start with a 5-min. SSECOB if 20 min. feels like too much. Then, if you can, make it a regular practice. Notice the difference.