Meditation Techniques for Those Who Can’t Sit Still

Maybe you’ve heard that practicing various meditation techniques is a great way to lower stress, reduce cardiovascular and other diseases, and even keep you focused and mentally alert, but it is really hard to sit for even five minutes let alone hours. Fortunately you can practice meditation without sitting in a cushion in lotus position. Here are a few meditation techniques you can practice when you just can’t seem to sit still:

Walking Meditation Technique

A walking meditation is just what it sounds like, only you practice mindfulness with every step you take. You can take slow, quiet steps walking through a Zen-like garden or just wandering around your neighborhood. If you live in a busy city, try listening to soothing music over some headphones, preferably something that calms your nervous system and has a slow beats-per-minute rhythm. Observe your surroundings with fresh eyes. Pause when something arises that catches your attention and really take it in. Notice people, dogs, and buildings as if you’ve never seen them before and realize what you’ve been missing. The world can seem to come awake when you start to give it mindful attention. The most important thing is not to be in a hurry to get from point A to point B but to take in all the sights and sounds, as well as your reactions to them as you walk in full presence.

Working Meditation Technique

Manual labor doesn’t have to be a mindless way to spend your time. Have you ever washed the dishes with complete mindfulness or how about done laundry with your full attention? While it is difficult to do these seemingly ‘mindless’ tasks without reaching for your smart phone or chatting up a friend, see if you can do them with complete concentration. Sometimes insights about your life or a problem you have been facing will come to the surface of your mind while you are being mindful of ‘mindless’ tasks. Some of the greatest geniuses of our time have come up with their ‘aha moments’ will doing daily chores in a mindful way. This type of meditation technique can be utilized almost every day since most people always have a laundry list of chores to get done.

Moving Meditation Technique

Take any freeform movement – dancing, singing, swimming, etc.. and bring complete mindfulness to it. Notice how your breath moves through your body while doing it.  Notice how the water moves over your skin or how the vibrations of music move through your body. Be completely present in the act – whatever it is. Remove all outer distractions except the moment, the movement and you. There is a profound peace in this type of awareness, and it doesn’t just come when you are sitting in more traditional forms of meditation. Moving meditation techniques allow you to experience the world, but also stay aware of the smallest details within an experience. If you’ve never tried this before, be ready for a completely other-worldly experience of worldly activities.

Meditation Techniques for a Better Mindfulness Practice

While you can practice meditation techniques like being aware of your breath, or sitting and watching your thoughts pass through your mind like clouds passing over the blue sky, there are ways to meditate almost all day long.  Every attempt at being more present in each moment of your day pays off dividends. Interestingly, practicing these types of meditation techniques also makes it easier to meditate seated. One practice informs the others. Eventually it becomes a natural practice and you live in complete awareness at all times, and ‘sitting’ for meditation becomes superfluous.

 

Photo: shifuyanlei