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Lunch time zen

Meditate on your lunch break sharpen focus and increase your productivity.

People say the hardest part about meditating is finding the time to meditate. This makes sense: who these days has time to do nothing? It’s hard to justify.

If you begin to pair your meditation with lunch, pretty soon, you’ll think of meditation when you eat lunch, and it will become a trigger for you. Find a quiet nook in or around the office and carve out a slice of your lunchtime to sit in stillness to make it a habit. Schedule a 10-minute break on your calendar. If you work in front of the computer, you can put it on your Outlook calendar so you’ll be prompted.  If you work at an office, tell your co-workers about it so they can support your silence.

Stressed out and tired? Then find some peace and harmony with a simple guide to a mindful lunch break;

  • Find the quietest spot possible. If the weather is nice, get to a park or some kind of green space away from traffic. If you can’t find anywhere quiet, put on some headphones and listen to soothing meditation music.
  • Set your phone alarm so you don’t have to worry about getting back to work.
  • If you feel comfortable doing so, cup your hands over your eyes to rest them.
  • Breathe mindfully. Inhale slowly, drawing in breath until your stomach is fully extended, and then exhale, bringing your navel in towards your spine. Try to concentrate only on the feeling of breathing, and your body. If possible, do this for at least 10 minutes.
  • Focusing your mind on something other than work will ensure that you return to your desk feeling refreshed and ready to take on new challenges.

Meditation brings many benefits: It refreshes us, helps us settle into what’s happening now, makes us wiser and gentler, helps us cope in a world that overloads us with information and communication, and more. But if you’re still looking for a business case to justify spending time meditating, try this one: Meditation makes you more productive.

How? By increasing your capacity to resist distracting urges. 

Research shows that an ability to resist urges will improve your relationships, increase your dependability, and raise your performance. If you can resist your urges, you can make better, more thoughtful decisions. You can be more intentional about what you say and how you say it. You can think about the outcome of your actions before following through on them.

Our ability to resist an impulse determines our success in learning a new behaviour or changing an old habit. It’s probably the single most important skill for our growth and development.

As it turns out, that’s one of the things meditation teaches us. It’s also one of the hardest to learn.