Practice mindfulness on your commute

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The average Brit has a 54-minute commute and if you?re living or working in or around London, that time is likely to be much more.

Commuting for many is not a particularly enjoyable experience. Whether you walk, bus, train or tube, instead of spending those precious minutes grumbling, stressing, sweating, or swearing over bad stop-go traffic, crammed tubes and battling for a seat ? why not keep calm, and instead use it as time to practice mindfulness?

Graham Doke, mindfulness expert and founder of the Anamaya meditation and self-development app proposes these simple but helpful tips to incorporate into your daily routine:

Don?t rush

This applies to all journeys, but you will struggle to take note of your walking pattern if you?re charging down the street. You?re also less likely to take in your surroundings if you?re seeing them at speed out of the corner of your eye.

Ditch the headphones

You can?t take things in if you?re blasting your ears with either music or words. While sometimes it can be nice to go into another world with your favourite tunes, mindfulness is doing the opposite. Get out of your head and listen to what?s around you.

Think about the act of walking

?Pay attention to this process. Feel the heel hitting the ground, the ground under your foot, feel how you automatically compensate for uneven surfaces, and feel how you push off with your toes. Focus on this – it?s actually quite complicated and very engaging.?

Be mindful of transport

Mindfulness is observing the world around you, and concentrating on your senses:

Touch

One of the most overlooked senses when you?re on your travels is touch. Think when you?re sitting there, ?how do your clothes feel on you? How does the seat feel? Are you warm??

If you?re on a jam-packed carriage getting hot, think about whether you can sense any part of your body that?s feeling the breeze, or try and isolate areas of space you have, rather than the elbows in your back.

Sight

 

Look at people – are they happy or sad, alone or with people? Look at what is going on outside – is it grey, can you see grass? We can sometimes get sensory overload with our sight, so it can help to scan the area. Look at things closely, area by area; go from floor to ceiling.

Sound

?Busses and carriages are full of sound – listen! People talking, movement of air, the sound of the engines, doors opening and closing, sounds from outside.? Hence why you need to leave your headphones to one side!

Smell

This may not be the most appealing idea on a full bus or train, but not all smells are bad. ?The most obvious smell will be food, or people. But buses and carriages all have their own distinctive smells – notice them. A faint smell of exhaust, a musty smell in the tube, dust…?

 

Read the full story at http://bit.ly/1JLPV1I

 

 

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    AUTHOR

    Amelia Walker

    Editor – PA Life

    All stories by: Amelia Walker