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DSCN2111Forget the notion you have to meditate for hours a day to receive the benefits.

Five minutes of focused deep breathing can reduce stress, increase energy and improve productivity and concentration.

– Begin by finding a quiet place where you will not be interrupted for a minimum of five minutes and sit with your back straight in an upright position. 

– Inhale deeply through your nose and exhale through your mouth. You should feel your belly move, not just your chest. Inhale to a count of 3, hold for a count of 5 and exhale for a count of 8. Repeat three times.

– Continue breathing and focus your attention on an object (candle flame), mantra (a sound, word, or positive affirmation), or simply stay focused on your breath.

– When your mind begins to wander, and it will, gently bring it back to your meditation. When your time is up, gently stretch your body and return to your day.

Meditation can be done anywhere, at any time and doesn’t require any special training or equipment. The benefits of meditation include lowering blood pressure, reducing insomnia, easing anxiety and depression and general pain relief. The next time you are feeling the effects of a stressful day take five minutes to reduce your mental “clutter” and increase your ability to stay focused. Eventually you will be able to meditate for longer periods of time. Your chaotic thoughts will quietly fade away and you will begin to develop more patience with people and events in your life.

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