Tag Archive | Meditation

On Meditation and Compounding

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“Your breaks after a pomodoro (30 minutes) of deep work are 10-minute long, right?”

“Yes.”

What if you did a 5-minute meditation during every break?

All these little meditation rep(etition)s compound [<link; short read].

You start and end the day with a 10-minute meditation. That’s 20 minutes. 8 breaks – 4 hours of deep work – mean 40 more minutes. That’s easily one hour of meditation every day.”

“Beautiful idea.”

Loving Breath

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“What is a loving breath?”

A breath imbued with Meaning.

We’ve talked a while ago about macro-meditation [<link; short read].” 

“I remember. Seeing your life as meditation.”

“Yes.

Just like in regular meditation you have a point of focus – an anchor – you keep returning to, in macro-meditation you have an anchor for your life which you keep returning to throughout the day.

For me the anchor is Love. 

Whenever I notice I lost sight of my anchor, I take a deep loving breath and a smile. I often follow it with a love mantra [<link; short read].”

On Music and Meditation

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“What if you meditated while listening to music?”

“Wouldn’t it be distracting?”

“Depending on the music, it can serve as background, subtly influencing your emotional state, or as challenge, training against distractions.

Alternatively, you can make the music the very focus of meditation – the anchor. You can turn the musical experience into a loving grateful meditation.”

Meditation Optimization

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“I want to do numerous micro-meditations throughout the day, but I keep forgetting it. How can I remember to practice more often?”

“Let’s use BJ Fogg’s habit-creation framework as a guide:

Anchor
Behavior
Celebration

Anchor is a reminder to do the habit.
Behavior is a tiny version of the habit, which you do right after the Anchor.
Celebration is something that creates positive emotion, which you do right after the tiny habit.

To remember to practice more often, you need to surround yourself with reminders. Create a system of reminders. These create structure.

You can focus on time. For instance, by having a timer that rings every half an hour. (Reminder: timer)

You can focus on activity. For instance, at the beginning of certain activities. It’s important to be specific about it. Make a list of them. (Reminder: every activity on the list)

You can focus on both time and activity. Let’s say you’re doing activity A, and then you start doing activity B. I call the time in between them, transitional-time. (Reminder: transitional-time)”

“What if I start activity B immediately after activity A?”

“In this case, you need to create transitional-time. I like to (metaphorically) think of this practice as creating space.

You can also set reminders in your environment, and use things in your environment as reminders. For instance, the color blue can be a reminder – or whatever colors you associate with the practice. Every instance of beauty can be a reminder. And so on.

To remember to practice more often, you also need to associate positive emotions with the practice.

Turn every micro-meditation into a micro-moment of positivity [<link; medium read].

Moving Meditation

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“What are the two most important practices?”

“Movement and Meditation.”

“Why?”

“Movement is essential physical training.
Meditation is essential mental training.

Movement is an essential pillar of Health and Energy.
Meditation is an essential pillar of Concentration – maintaining your Attention on one thing and cutting through distractions.

Both are essential prerequisites for clear Thinking and Peak Performance.”

“If you see them as two distinct entities, you can only practice them sequentially. That is inefficient use of time.”

“What do you suggest?”

Integrate them into one practice: Moving Meditation.

This way, whenever you practice one you also practice the other, thus increasing practice density. [<link; short read]

To make the practice memorable, you can think of it as yummy food for your BodyMind, and you can access it through their combined initials.”

“MM… It makes me smile, I like it.

MM also makes me think of Memento Mori and Mental Models.”

“The more things you connect it with, the better. Each of those things is a potential reminder for the practice.”

Loving Meditation

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“How can I upgrade my meditation practice?”

Make every meditation a Loving Meditation.

The Essence of Meditation 3

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“What is the essence of the meditation practice?”

Concentration, or Focus. Maintaining your attention on one thing in spite of distractions. This focus point is called the anchor.”

“Aren’t you supposed to focus on your breath?”

“It can be your breath or anything else. The breath is a beautiful anchor because it’s a powerful physiological tool in itself. By slowing it down, it has a calming effect.”

“Aren’t you supposed to do it in a distraction-free environment?”

“There are two types of distractions: internal and external. The main type of distractions are internal – your own thoughts. 

A distraction-free external environment makes the practice easier – though by no means easy. You progress in the practice by adding challenge. It can be adding various levels of external distraction, and/or doing it in various states of inner turmoil.”

On Mindfulness and Meditation

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“I love Emily Fletcher’s definition of Mindfulness:

Mindfulness: the art of bringing your awareness into the present moment.

“Bringing your awareness into the present moment is easy. Keeping it there, that’s the hard part. I’d rephrase the definition to:

Mindfulness: the art of keeping your awareness in the present moment.

“What’s the practice?”

“I find it useful to compare it with Meditation.

Meditation is the practice of focused awareness. Focusing your attention on a point (anchor-point).

Mindfulness is the practice of diffuse awareness. Focusing your attention on the now, on the present experience, and engaging all senses (VAKOG).

The two practices are complementary.

It is possible to combine the practices into one. 

Mindfulness Meditation is the practice of both focused and diffuse awareness. While focusing your attention on a point, expanding your awareness to your entire peripheral field of vision, and engaging all senses. 

I know this practice from NLP. The practice originates from Hawaii where they call it Hakalau. In NLP it is also referred to as ‘the now state’, or ‘the learning state’.”

“You use the word ‘presence’ a lot. What’s the difference between mindfulness and presence?”

“The way I use them,
presence is the desired state,
mindfulness and meditation are the practice for reaching the state.”

The Essence of Meditation 2

Concentration is at the crux of all human success and endeavor. If you can’t concentrate, you can’t manifest.

Concentration is the ability to keep your awareness on one thing for an extended period of time.

(Dandapani)


Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“What is the essence of meditation?”

“I thought we were done last time [<link; medium read].”

“To practice something efficiently you need to know exactly what you’re practicing.

What is the structure of the practice?
What is the scope of the practice?

Last time we focused on the structure. The scope however – the why – is equally important. The more specific and inspiring, the better.

Compare:

I’m meditating because it’s good for me.

That’s terribly vague, and really uninspiring.

I’m meditating because it’s essential training for performing at my best.

I’m meditating because it’s the gateway into Flow, the peak performance state, the optimal state of being.

In meditating, I’m training Concentration and Relaxation, and I’m preparing for Flow.

I call this why-priming [<link; medium read]. You can do it right before meditating, as a form of intention-setting.”

“Pre-Meditation?”

“I like what you did there.”

The Challenge Principle

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“I can’t meditate. My mind is racing / I’m feeling x.”

That’s the BEST time to meditate.

Remember the ultimate goal of the practice.”

Achieving Stillness under ANY conditions.

“Keep that in mind always, and treasure any opportunity to practice it.”