One Minute Breathing Space

This really simple meditation can be done anywhere, anytime and is one of my favourite meditations because the effect that one minute has on me can be quite astounding. If faced with a difficult situation, this is my go-to meditation. It calms me down, it focuses me, it centres me.

  • You can do this seated or standing. Either way, make sure you are comfortable with your spine in neutral and your feet flat on the floor to ground you to the earth.
  • Close your eyes if you feel comfortable to do so – if in a public place, just lower your gaze. Just sit or stand there for a moment.
  • Now bring your attention to your breath. Exhale and inhale in your own time.
  • Feel the different sensations as you breathe in and out – the breath on your upper lip, the rise and fall of your chest and stomach.
  • Keep your attention on your breath.
  • If you find your mind wandering, do not worry. Acknowledge that your mind has wandered, but don’t judge yourself. Be kind to yourself. Gently bring your mind back to your breathing – and carry on.
  • Whatever you are feeling – calm, angry, frustrated – just let it happen. Acknowledge your feelings – allowing them to be.
  • And then, gently open your eyes.
  • With practice, you can increase the time from one minute to two minutes to 10 minutes and so on. But, never underestimate that doing just one minute alone can also be truly powerful.

Adapted from Mindfulness – a Practical Guide to Finding Peace in a Frantic World, Williams and Pennman