Quiet Your Mind with this Focused Attention Meditation

You can use this portable practice at work or at home, whenever you’re in need of a quick break to refresh your mind.

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You know when you have something you need to do but you just can’t focus? Despite your earnest intention to get the job done, any (and every) distraction pulls at your attention like a dog seeing a squirrel. Instead of finishing the report, you find yourself scrolling through Instagram or researching recipes. You get everything ready to begin your project, and the next thing you know you’re standing in front of the refrigerator (for the second time in an hour) wondering what to eat. You start to write the evaluation and midsentence remember the email you forgot to respond to the day before.

When your mind seems stuck in pinball-machine mode, it’s nearly impossible to force yourself to focus on one task. That’s when you need to gently guide it away from the romper room to a quieter, calmer den. “It’s all about refocusing your attention, calming down your nervous system, and coming back to center so you can move forward in your day,” says Ali Katz, author of One Minute to Zen: Go From Hot Mess to Mindful Mom in One Minute or Less.

When your mind seems stuck in pinball-machine mode, it’s nearly impossible to force yourself to…

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