Once you learn how to meditate, you can take that skill and use it anywhere you choose. This means that otherwise “dead” times can be transformed into meditation. Even when everyone around you is dashing around like madmen, such as on a busy subway journey or when you’re motionless, stuck in a traffic jam.
Here are some ways you can use to meditate whenever and wherever you choose. Obviously you should only meditate where it is safe to do so. For instance, don’t try these techniques whilst you are driving down the outside lane of the freeway.
Start by claiming your own space. This can be as little or as much as you can get away with. So if you’re standing on a subway train, it’s not likely to be much. But if you’re the passenger in a taxi which is crawling its way through rush hour traffic, you’ve likely got more space available.
Then close your eyes. If you’re in public and are worried about doing this, wear some dark shades. Then people won’t know whether your eyes are open or not.
Next, slowly lower your breathing rate. Take a deep breath in. Hold it for a couple seconds and then gently release it. Repeat this process for a few breaths until you start to feel relaxed.
After this, choose a mantra to help you keep your meditative state. You won’t be saying this out loud (unless of course you want to clear a subway carriage!). You’ll just be repeating it over and over in your head to yourself. This can be a classic meditation mantra or anything else you choose. It doesn’t matter too much – just choose a mantra to repeat, to help you with remembering when to breath in and out.
Then focus on the things you want to leave behind from whatever has stressed you today. It could be someone at work who wound you up, maybe it was a shop assistant who wasn’t at their best. Whatever you want to rid yourself of.
Let the object of your stress flow out of your body. It can flow out when you exhale if you want. Or you could tie it tightly to a traffic light or the gates of the subway station. It doesn’t matter – just see your stress left behind, helpless and – most importantly – nowhere near you. And also allow it to melt away when you’ve left your stress stranded, so it doesn’t affect anyone else’s day. Allow it to unstress itself as well!
If you’re performing this meditation on public transport, remember to allow yourself to hear any announcements as to where you are or make counting the stops part of the meditation process. Otherwise you could get so deeply tranced out by your meditation that you miss your stop. Obviously if you’re in a taxi, the taxi driver will wake you – after all, they want their fare – so it’s less important in this situation.
Enjoy practicing your meditation!