It is said that the average person has about thirty-five thoughts a minute. Now, I can’t say whether that is true for everyone, I’m not even sure how thoughts are measured, but we certainly think more than we realise.
Consistent positive thoughts tend to bring about positivity in our world. However, it is when our thoughts become dark, menacing and repetitive that they make life more challenging. Which, sadly, for the majority, is often the case. Especially when experiencing difficulties or stress in life.
Research has shown that negative thought patterns are inflammatory. Meaning, they are not only disruptive to our mental health but also to our physical. The body and mind are connected. What weakens one will weaken the other.
As most of you know, getting out of a repetitive thinking pattern is not easy to do, especially when thoughts have been triggered by stress, trauma or ‘people factors.’ But training our mind for stillness, through meditation, can be a passport to a healthier and happier life.
Get Back in Control
The problem is, in our busy lives, finding time for a meditation practice becomes a chore and can in itself cause feelings of stress. We’re often advised that the only way to see results, from meditating, is to spend fifteen to twenty minutes in deep meditation. Well, I’ve discovered that that does not have to be the case.
We can get incredible benefits from practicing meditation for just three minutes a day. Yes, just three minutes!
We can all find a spare three minutes. Whether that be when we are in the bath, when we are cooling down after exercise, whilst waiting for dinner to cook, or before we go to sleep at night. It is very doable. I find morning is the best time, as it sets me up for the day.
You may now be thinking there would be no way you could still the mind within a three-minute time frame. But it is entirely possible and I am about to reveal the simple steps that can allow for three minutes of thought-free bliss.
What You Need
You will need a loud ticking clock, or at least loud enough to hear, and a comfortable place to sit where you won’t be disturbed.
- Close your eyes
- Focus your mind on the clock ticking. One tick should be one second.
- Now, start counting back from thirty. Allow your mind to go nowhere else except the ticking clock and your count.
- When you reach one, fold over one of your fingers and go back to counting back from thirty. Continue for another five rounds. Folding over a finger after each round (your fingers are your counters).
- If you find your mind attempting to wander, simply bring it back to the count and the tick of the clock.
- After six rounds of counting back from thirty, your mini meditation is done.
How easy was that? Three minutes and done.
The practice becomes so enjoyable that you often find when the three minutes are up you want to stay that little bit longer within the stillness of your mind. (It is often in this stillness that we get incredible insights and intuitive downloads.) In fact, this three-minute meditation is the perfect starting point to building a longer practice. If that’s what you want.
(I will note that if your mind has been overly hectic with a rush of rampant thoughts, you may need to do the technique twice. First time to still your mind, the second round to enjoy the stillness.)
Make it Your Own
If you prefer to change the way you count, feel free. I find counting backwards for a round of thirty is a better way to stay in control of my mind. It is often when I do a longer count that my mind starts wandering. But, if you prefer, counting back from sixty or even one-hundred and eighty is fine too. Whatever works for you.
Why the Clock?
There’s something rhythmically therapeutic about listening to a ticking clock. I guess the flowing beat is hypnotic. It helps keep the mind distracted from thoughts. That’s not to say you won’t have thoughts when you first start practicing. Thoughts are powerful little blighters. They do not like to be told to shut up. But by using the count and the ticking clock, you very quickly realise when your mind is wandering, and can pull it back into line.
Watch this video to see the importance of meditating at this time.
Until next time…