3 Aspects of Meditation that Help Us Focus

I will be honest. I did not consider meditation as a solution to distraction because I had the wrong idea about what it is and why it is important. I saw it as just the latest flavor of wellness fad, and I was turned off by all the endorsements of celebrities and athletes who promote its benefit in their work, the apps crowding the app stores, and the ubiquitous ads for mindfulness retreats and festivals.

Then I came across an article entitled. “The Real Meaning of Meditation,” by Swami Rama, which focused on the importance of meditation in learning about who we are outside and inside. In LIFESCALE, I describe overcoming my doubts about the power of meditation. Through regular practice, it has become a key element in my journey back to focus, productivity, and a richer, more creative life.

Here are Three LIFESCALE-related benefits of meditation:

  1. Turning Inward.
    For most of us in the west, we’ve spent our lives looking outward, encouraged to verify things in the “external world.” We’re never taught and seldom encouraged to look within, thus remaining strangers to ourselves. In Swami Rama’s words, “Except for the practice of meditation, there is no method to truly develop control over the totality of the mind.”
  2. Cultivating Stillness.
    Learning how to be still is the cornerstone of meditation and, in many similar ways, Lifescaling. Rama recommends we, “Find a simple, uncluttered, quiet place where you will not be disturbed. Sit on the floor with a cushion under you or in a firm chair, with your back straight and your eyes closed.” In line with the exercises I recommend in LIFESCALE, this practice can help us cultivate a less-distracted, more deeply focused life.
  3. Paying Attention.
    I love this piece of wisdom from Swami Rama, “When you meditate, you give yourself an inner vacation.” It helps us return to the simple practice of paying attention to our breath, slowing letting extraneous thoughts pass through our minds,
    and returning to our breath. “..if you apply the principle of meditation to experiences that come before you, you can fully attend to what is taking place,” he writes.

And this ability to focus amidst the chaos is a powerful cornerstone of Lifescaling.