Wise Mind, Open Mind, Ron Alexander departs somewhat from orthodoxy in his prescription for meditation for busy minds. Most notably, he recommends keeping a pad of paper and pen nearby, so that if anything really pressing comes to mind — from a new movie idea to a grocery list — you can jot that down quickly, and resume meditation free of current concerns.
- Sit in a comfortable cross-legged position, or in a straight-backed chair with your feet on the floor, or lie down. If seated, close your eyes gently; if you lie down, keep your eyes slightly open.
- Set an alarm. Try meditating for between 12 and 20 minutes.
- Concentrate on your breath as it enters and leaves your nostrils, or on the rise and fall of your belly.
- When thoughts, feelings, or sensations arise, don't try too hard to push them away. Mentally acknowledge them, but then try to concentrate anew on your breathing.
A version of this article appeared in the June 2011 issue of Fast Company magazine.