A mini-meditation, exactly what it sounds like, is the best way I've found to remain focused, centered, and grateful through out the day.
Take a brief moment to focus on clearing your mind, concentrating on your breath, and remembering all the blessings you have in your life.
30 seconds, one minute, five minutes, whatever. There is no correct amount of time or frequency through out the day.
I use common daily occurrences to trigger mine. This could be anything that happens regularly through out your standard day. Right now, I use standing in wait. While traveling I constantly find myself waiting for buses, metro trains, cross-walks, etc. I let this serve as a trigger to pause whatever podcast, audiobook, song happens to be coming through my ear buds and have a mini-meditation. I'll fix my posture, try to clear my mind of all thoughts and external distractions, and focus on my breath. I'll bring my awareness to any prominent physical and emotional sensations. After I'll allow myself to dwell on all the wonderful things that I have in my life.
I also use secluded, peaceful sitting places as a trigger. My daily explorations often bring me through parks, gardens, plazas, museum grounds, etc. When I see an opportune sitting place - a secluded bench, a nice flat rock, a peaceful fountain, a shaded patch of grass - I'll allow myself to sit and have a mini-meditation. Extra bonus if I find a sufficiently secluded place where I won't be assumed crazy for closing my eyes and taking long, audible breaths.
My awareness of the world and of my body lingers for hours. I find myself more observant and in tune with the world around me. I find myself consciously aware of my actions and thoughts rather than simply going through the motions.
Pick anything as a trigger. I used to have a widget on my work computer that would give me an hourly pop-up reminder to "Drink water, stretch, breath, be grateful." (1)
Maybe you constantly find yourself on hold, use that time. Maybe you work in hourly appointment blocks or have regularly scheduled meetings, use the time between. Think about your standard day and the frequent occurrences that could serve as triggers. I bet you have plenty.
Regardless of whether you have a regular meditation habit or not, I've found no greater way to relax my mind and body, maintain my focus on my daily (and life's) mission, and remain eternally thankful for the positive things in my life.
Once these begin to become a part of your everyday life they start to feel like a gift. A brief moment of calm in an otherwise tumultuous sea.
Find some frequent triggers and give yourself the gift of mini-meditations. Your mind, body, and spirit will love you for it.
- There are tons of these. I don't remember the name of the one that I used. Just Google "pop up reminder widget."