During the years that I was a busy executive, I could work for hours before remembering to take a single, present breath. I felt so distracted by my racing thoughts and ballooning to-do list that I sometimes arrived in a conference room without remembering how I got there. This manic pace left me feeling disembodied and depleted.
Through a lot of experimentation, I found ways to integrate the practices I learned in meditation retreats and yoga classes as I transitioned between meetings. At the end of the day, if I took three mindful breaths while washing my hands, spent five minutes stretching in a conference room, or listened to one guided relaxation audio, I felt more resilient.
I also noticed that when I was able to re-center myself, I made choices as a leader that were more impactful and authentic. Taking time to connect with my breath helped me show up at the leader I wanted to be.
I hope this brief guided practice supports you in your life. Find out how it serves you best. In your car before driving home? In your office before checking email? After a tense negotiation? Before you fall asleep?