Let Neil Seligman help you unlock the power of this art to open your mind and nurture an inner sense of calm
Start your journey to mindfulness as soon as you wake up with this set of exercises designed to help you on your transition to peace and calm. “This practice was inspired by Dr Christine Carter’s ‘Better-Than-Nothing Workout’, consisting of a one-minute plank, 20 push-ups and 25 squats which she does every morning upon waking,” explains Neil. By taking this and turning it in a meditative technique, the aim is to make this into an enjoyable morning practice which fits into your busy schedule, which you can do day after day.
STAGE ONE: Breathe
1 Pay close attention to your first breaths of the day.
2 Set your timer for one, three or five minutes and on each breath, add a count to the inhale and exhale. In your head, it sounds like this, ‘One, one. Two, two. Three, three, etc.’
STAGE TWO: Stretch
3 Bend, yawn, fold and open.
4 Allow the body to teach you today’s unique stretching routine.
5 Now shake and jump until the energy is flowing through every cell.
STAGE THREE: Strengthen
6 Do 10 repetitions of three exercises that you already know well. Be present and aware through each movement.
STAGE FOUR: Sit
7 Set a timer for your mindfulness meditation. Choose anything between one and twenty minutes.
8 As your object for meditation, choose one from this list:
- Self: sit in the gentle awareness arising within you.
- My day: contemplate the day ahead.
- Appreciation: notice all the things that you feel grateful for in this moment.
- A person you love.
STAGE FIVE: Commit
9 Complete the following sentences by speaking them aloud or writing them in a mindfulness journal. Do not think too much about each one − just say what comes in the moment:
a. Today I am commited to: _____
b. Today I will make my contribution by: _____
c. Today I am most grateful for: ______
d. Today I let go of: ______
e. Today I forgive: ______
Record your experience, along with your commitments, in your mindfulness journal.
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Neil Seligman is a life coach, healer, Usui reiki master and founder of The Conscious Professional. He is also the author of 100 Mindfulness Meditations (Conscious House), available from amazon.co.uk, £12.99