I grew up in the extreme cold of British Columbia. I remember as a child having to cover my face to keep my eyelashes from freezing. When I took a deep breath, I could feel the cold air burn in my lungs. Once I got past the initial shock of breathing in below zero temperatures, I felt clean and refreshed.
Lately, I have been practicing meditation. I’ve downloaded a couple short meditations on my iPhone. I lie very still and focus on my breathing. A female voice drones on telling me to visualize a scenic picture that gives me happiness. I must confess when I practice this before bed I sleep better.
I have never put much stock into meditation. It’s nothing new for me to take a few deep breaths before a presentation or prior to calling an angry client. However, learning the practice of stopping everything to focus on my breathing is a very new concept.
I’ve been doing this for the grand total of 14 days. Not quite long enough to develop a daily habit. That being said, I’m enjoying my quiet time. My mental image is always a beach scene with crashing waves in Maui, which is one of my favorite vacation spots.
Breathing while I focus on the beauty of Maui is a far cry from the frigid cold of Canada. Nevertheless, it’s a simple fact that the act of deep and focused breathing wherever you are does have a calming effect.
I encourage you to slow down and take a few moments to bring your attention to some image that can give you a few moments of relaxation and relief. If you do, you will be ready for the task ahead.