Emma Mills is a writer and meditation teacher with a passion for sharing ideas about living well. Her new book, Inhale, Exhale Repeat is a meditation handbook full of ideas, hints and tips to take you through the whole of your day.
Here’s her advice on a 10 minute meditation for elevenses. So rather than grabbing a coffee from the canteen or Starbucks try this instead.
1. Make a mid-morning cup of fresh herbal tea and nip outside. Take a poetry anthology or your journal with you.
2. Take an Easy Seat and follow your Easy Breath for a few minutes. Try breathing through your nose for this activity.
3. Divide your next out-breath into four sections so that it comes out as four little pumps.
4. Do the same with the next in-breath, splitting the inhale into four equal sections like gasps.
5. Take this breathing pattern for six breaths so long as it feels good and comfortable.
6. It can sometimes help you to focus if you pop a hand over your stomach as you do this.
7. Let your breathing return to a very natural and normal pace.
8. Pick a poem at random from your anthology or journal to savour. You’ll come back to your desk inspired with a refreshed perspective.
TIP: Read The Door, a beautiful poem by Miroslav Holub.
We’re all living faster, working harder, and often so busy we forget to take a moment to sit back, close our eyes and just, breathe. Yet this hectic lifestyle can get us down, making us lethargic, stressed and burnt out. So how to break the cycle?
Inspired by traditional eastern lessons of meditation and mindfulness, neuroscience and insights from literature, Emma Mills offers fresh and simple tools to keep our minds healthy, from that early morning coffee through to the moment you climb into bed, without having to invest in expensive detox courses or far-flung retreats. She guides the reader through a course of a single day, with easy tips, meditations, recipes, literary recommendations and practical takeaways that can be completed in a matter of minutes.
So just inhale, exhale, and repeat – and let a sense of calm and focus transform your day.
For more tips and exclusive thought-provoking pieces, sign up to the monthly Penguin Living newsletter
More about the author