How To Focus Your Attention | Mindfulness Exercises

Let’s begin by taking a moment to allow your body to settle (2 seconds). Find a comfortable position that allows your spine to be long but with a natural curve in the low back (2 seconds). You can close your eyes (2 seconds) or keep them open with a soft gaze downward a few feet in front of you. Let the belly and shoulders relax (2 seconds).

 

Today I’ll guide you through a focused attention practice focusing on the breath,

this will help calm your mind and relax your body (2 seconds).

Before we start take a full breath in (2 seconds) and a long breath out (5 seconds).

Now allow the breath to find its natural rhythm in and out (10 seconds).

Begin this practice by connecting with what draws you here (2 seconds).

Maybe it’s a wish for greater well-being for yourself and for others.

Maybe a desire for some rest and calm (15 seconds).

Now bring your attention to the breath (2 seconds).

You may notice movement of the abdomen or chest (2 seconds),

sensations of air passing at the tip of the nose (2 seconds),

sensations in the throat (2 seconds),

or a sense of the whole body breathing (5 seconds).

Wherever the sensation is most vivid for you,

allow your attention to rest there (15 seconds).

Breathe in, breathe out (5 seconds).

Can you notice the moment the inhale begins?

How it continues and the moment it ends? (5 seconds)

Can you notice the very moment when the exhale begins? (10 seconds)

How it continues and the moment it ends? (5 seconds)

Is there a slight pause before the next inhale begins? (10 seconds)

Try to keep your attention focused through one complete cycle of breath (20 seconds).

See if you can sustain your focused attention on the breath for another breath (2 seconds),

then another complete cycle of breath (30 seconds).

When you notice the mind has wandered,

just come back to this awareness of the breath (2 seconds)

with gentleness, kindness, and without judgement (30 seconds).

Allow the breath to be a kind of home base (2 seconds),

an anchor for awareness (20 seconds).

Thoughts will come (2 seconds) and thoughts will go (2 seconds).

No need to push them away (2 seconds) or to chase after them.

When the mind wanders, just come back to the breath,

come back to this moment (2 seconds),

right here, right now (30 seconds).

Lets finish this focused attention practice now by taking a full breath in (2 seconds)

and a long breath out (5 seconds)

*ding* (15 seconds).

Integrated Practice: Pick a short task you need to do today, (e.g. writing an email, washing the dishes). During the task, practice focusing all of your attention on the task and notice when your attention wanders, gently bringing it back to the task at hand.

 

 

Reflection Question:

How does this shift the experience of doing the task?

 

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