"A relaxed mind is a creative mind and a creative mind is a relaxed mind and only a relaxed mind can become a one-pointed mind, and a one-pointed mind is the most wonderful mind; it is the most powerful, it can do anything."
I don’t know about you, but it doesn't take much to distract me. In fact, for much of my life I've been my own worst enemy to staying focused and it's something I have to actively work with every day.
We've all been there, we sit down to work on something and all of a sudden you're taking a Facebook quiz about which Harry Potter character you are, getting a snack, reading articles, watching ridiculous YouTube videos, making sure you have the "right" music on in the background, or organizing your desk (and then entire workspace) because you simply can't concentrate in this moment with things out of place…it can be as if everything else besides the task at hand becomes a priority.
We know that once we get into the zone we're good, but some days it's more challenging than others to get there.
Having a plan of attack for the day and specific time set aside is helpful and pretty necessary, but really we've got to get our minds clear and energized in order to give the proper attention to whatever the thing is we want or need to do.
If the intention is to bring our best to every project, meeting, communication, and relationship, we have to be a bit of a master of our own minds.
So how do we master the mind? Meditation, of course!
I use this meditation for pretty much anything and everything and it's my favorite when I need to get focused fast. Try it for 1-3 minutes every day when you sit down to work on something, or as often as you need a burst of energy or a reset.
Sit with your spine straight and legs uncrossed unless you're sitting in easy pose
Close your eyes and focus up and in between the brow point
Press the tips of the thumb and index finger together and rest your hands comfortably on your knees or lap
Breathe powerfully in and out through your nose at a more rapid pace than normal. You want to breathe quickly but most importantly you want the inhale and exhale to be even so don't worry if it's slower while you get the hang of it (just "pay attention to the breath and see if you can get it more rhythmic,"as my teacher Guru Jagat says).
To end inhale as deep as you possibly can through your nose and hold everything in for as long as is comfortable (don't strain), then exhale through the nose and relax.
**If you're pregnant or on the first 3 days of your menstrual cycle, do long deep breaths instead
(This meditation is called, Breath of Fire)
There will always be things going on and unexpectedly popping up around us. There will be days when it's so much easier than others to stay on track. If you're having a difficult time, don't be so hard on yourself, it happens to everyone and if you're wasting time being mad at yourself for not "doing what you were supposed to be doing" then you're just taking even more time away from doing what you need to do. If you use your breath practice consistently (and of course find some humor in your distracted behavior), focusing when you need to will start to become more effortless more often.