5 Morning Meditation Practices To Avoid Job Related Burnout
Research shows that incorporating morning meditation can reduce stress, improve focus and creativity, and increase overall job satisfaction. And morning meditation is a simple yet powerful way to not only start your day but potentially improve job performance. Meditating for a few minutes each morning can significantly benefit mental and physical well-being.
If you’re new to meditation, there are many online apps and videos to support you such as Take a Seat. Here are five effective morning meditation practices that you can easily incorporate into your daily routine.
Before You Meditate
Creating a dedicated space and routine for meditation can help make it a consistent practice. Here are some tips on setting up a meditation space and performance:
- You Don’t Need a Super Quiet Space: This is real life. It would be great if we could always find a quiet space, close the door and let nothing disturb us. But that’s not possible. Embrace the day with where you are. Meditation is a practice for life, not a practice to exclude the ebbs and flow of life. Choose a location that you can sit for a few minutes and if it ends up being a quiet space, great. If not, do not think you are failing or not equipped to meditate.
- Create a Soothing Atmosphere: It may help you get in the zone if you have a cushion or mat to sit on, and/pr consider adding some aromatherapy with essential oils or incense. But again, this isn’t required for meditation. You can meditate exactly where you are right now.
- Lay Out a Daily Schedule: Put away a particular time every day to contemplate. Start with a shorter duration and gradually increase it as you get more comfortable with the practice.
2. Slow down your breath
Slowing down your breath is useful technique for reducing stress, increasing focus, and cultivating a sense of inner calm. Here are some techniques for deepening your mindful breathing practice:
Focus on the Breath: The first step is to focus on the sensation of the breath as it enters and leaves your body. Use your breath as an anchor to return your mind to the moment it wanders.
Box Breathing: Box Breathing is a specific technique of mindful breathing that involves inhaling for a count of four, holding the breath for a count of four, exhaling for a count of four, and holding the breath for a count of four before starting again.
4-6 Breathing: Another technique is to extend your exhale intentionally. Allow the inhale to be shorter or to the count of 4. And as you exhale, count to 6. These longer exhales will naturally start to slow down your breath and move your nervous system into rest/digest mode or the parasympathetic.
Using Affirmations: Repeating a word or phrase can help you stay focused during your practice. Choose a word or phrase with meaning, such as “calm” or “peace,” and repeat it silently as you breathe.
3. Visualization and Intention Setting
Visualization and intention setting are potent tools for enhancing meditation and achieving your goals. Here are some tips on using visualization and intention setting to achieve your goals:
Yoga Nidra: Yoga Nidra is a lying-down meditation that deeply relaxes your body, mind, and emotions. You’ll enter a state of consciousness called the hypnogogic state, where you are between asleep and awake. When you are this relaxed yet still aware, it is a great place to set intentions and visualize your desired outcomes.
Take Action: While visualization and intention setting are powerful tools, they are not a substitute for action. Take concrete steps towards your goals and continue to visualize your desired outcome as you work towards achieving it.
4. Body Awareness
Incorporating movement and stretching into your morning meditation practice can help you become more aware of your body and improve your overall well-being. Here are some ways to integrate body awareness practices into your routine:
- Mindful Movement: Mindful movements, such as yoga or Tai Chi, can help you connect with your body and cultivate awareness of your physical sensations. These practices also help reduce stress and anxiety.
- Body Scan Meditation: Body scan meditation systematically brings awareness to each part of your body, noticing sensations without judgment. It can help you become more grounded and present in the moment and reduce stress and anxiety.
- Stretching: Stretching is a simple yet effective way to release tension and improve flexibility. Incorporating stretching into your daily routine can improve posture, reduce the risk of injury, and promote better circulation.
- Mindful Walking: Mindful walking involves bringing awareness to your body as you walk, focusing on the sensations of your feet touching the ground and the movement of your body. It can be a great way to incorporate exercise and meditation into your daily routine.
5. Self-Compassion and Gratitude
Self-compassion and gratitude are essential for nurturing your inner world and promoting emotional well-being. Here’s how to cultivate these practices:
- Loving-Kindness Meditation: The Loving-Kindness Meditation (Metta Meditation) is a well known meditation used to cultivate moments of love, gratitude, compassion for oneself, someone else, and everyone else. Give this practice a try when you want to extend love for yourself and humanity.
- Gratitude: Cultivating a sense of gratitude involves focusing on the positive aspects of your life and feeling thankful for them. Meditation can help you cultivate gratitude by providing space to reflect on what you’re grateful for and encouraging you to develop positive emotions.
Tips for Sustaining a Daily Meditation Routine
Consistency is vital to begin to notice your subtle body that meditation can support you in making a connection to.
In the yoga tradition, we consider five layers to our being, known as the 5 Koshas: The physical Layer (Anamaya Kosha), Subtle Breath Layer (Pranayama Kosha), Mind Layer (Manomaya Kosha), Intellect or Wisdom Layer (Vijnanamaya Kosha) and Bliss Body (Anandamaya Kosha).
Each time we choose a practice to support our layers, we ease the physical tension and notice the beauty around us.
But with busy schedules and daily demands, it can be challenging to maintain a daily meditation practice. Here are some tips for sustaining a daily meditation routine:
✓A few minutes daily is better than none. Gradually increase the duration as you feel comfortable.
✓ Incorporate mindful moments into your daily routine, such as after waking up or before bed.
✓ Find a community, center, or studio where you can meditate and practice in community for motivation and support.
✓ Trying different techniques and styles
✓ Remember that it’s okay to miss a day or two
Improve productivity, creativity, and overall well-being
Incorporating morning meditation practices can have a positive impact on job performance. Individuals can improve their productivity, creativity, and overall well-being by creating a daily meditation routine, setting up a meditation space, practicing mindful breathing, visualization, and intention setting, focusing on body awareness, and practicing self-compassion and gratitude. Start your morning meditation practice today to avoid burnout from the daily grind.