There is a simple concept practised in Zen Buddhism, but there is no need to become a Buddhist to follow it. This piece of wisdom plays an important role in my life and my work. By following this premise, you can make your life calmer and happier in just 15 minutes.
Spend a little time on yourself every day.
In my profession I often encounter people who are overworked and suffer from multiple symptoms such as anxiety, sleep disorders, stress, lack of concentration and so on. When asked for a solution I offer one simple piece of advice first.
Take 15 minutes every day for yourself.
Finding a space for yourself
Find a place where you feel happy and where you can be alone, without interruptions. Choose somewhere that is as quiet as possible, without distractions such as mobiles, laptops or televisions. Put aside appointments or meetings at work, and concerns about your family.
Make sure there is no one around. No work colleagues, no family, no friends, only you.
If you would like to, try using incense sticks or herbal oils for a calming aroma. Whatever you need to make your space feel comfortable and relaxing.
Initially you might want to use an alarm clock to alert you to the end of your 15 minutes.
Don’t lie down. There is a chance, even during the daytime, that you might fall asleep and that is not the aim.
It’s better that you stay sitting, so that you are more awake. Get comfortable. You could cross your legs or try a meditation stool, if you have one. Even simpler, just use an ordinary chair.
Take a seat. Calm down and start to concentrate on yourself.
It sounds easy but, believe me, it’s not. Taking time to focus on yourself means that you have to think about, well, you. Who are you? What do you want? Are you at the place in your life you want to be? What dreams do you have? What do you wish for?
Taking time to relax can help you to find answers
There are so many questions you could ask. Just remember, this 15 minutes is about you. So concentrate on one question at a time.
If you are looking for a solution, first look at the problem itself. What is it? Is there anything you can do to change it, or find a resolution?
If the answer is yes, then ask yourself what action can you take? Make a plan.
If the answer is no, then you need to accept the situation. Of course, that’s not always easy and often takes time. So, take your time. Don´t put yourself under pressure.
Just 15 minutes a day can lead to inner strength
Just practising this simple ’15 minutes to know yourself better’ workout every day will help you to feel stronger and more satisfied, much calmer and less stressed. It does take time and self discipline, but the results are a happier and more relaxed life.
I practise every day and my 15 minutes have become very precious. Taking the time for myself gives me power and strength. Sometimes I feel braver and more aware of my own abilities.
Of course, every single day is different. Sometimes it can be very difficult to sit down and spare the time to think. But don’t give up. Taking time for yourself is important.
Right now you might be thinking, “I can’t do this. I don’t have time.”
My answer would be that every day has 24 hours in it. Taking 15 minutes for yourself still leaves 23 hours and 45 minutes to do all the other things.