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Meditating in a Noisy Room: Yes I Can Hear Everything You're Saying
I’ve been practicing meditation for a few years now. It has since become one of my favorite things to do. It’s so simple and doesn’t require much time. I do it during my lunch break. I do it for a variety of reasons: it relieves various aches and pains, helps wake me up, keeps me calm, and most importantly because it makes me happy. I can meditate anywhere. I can do it sitting in my car with the windows down, lying down in the sun, in a hot room, a cold room, or a noisy room. It doesn’t matter. I’ve confused people so many times because they couldn’t tell how I could possibly be meditating where I was.
One time, while in a student lounge, I decided to meditate while I waited for my next class. One of my friends had a pain in her lower back, so another friend volunteered to crack it for her. I have no idea what happened next, but it resulted in a loud scream and cries of pain followed by a relieved “phew.” I was not bothered at all. My friends were stunned that I could still be meditating and even thought to shout about it, as if that would make a difference. It didn’t. Oh, I could hear everything they were saying. I just wasn’t really listening. Instead, I was focused on my breath and the mantra I was silently repeating to myself over and over again.
I have no problem meditating when it’s hot or cold either. I like meditating while I walk or run, which I’ll do pretty much regardless of the weather. But sometimes I’ll meditate outside simply because I feel like it. I could feel the sweat collecting on my forehead, but I didn’t care. I knew I was hot; but I wasn’t angry about it. (I usually get super cranky when it’s hot out.) In my mind, I was at peace. Nothing bothered me. Well, except for the feeling of the sun burning my skin. (I was sure to wear sunscreen after that.)
The reason why I meditate in so many random places is because it can be hard to set aside a designated time and place each day. While a student, and now with a full time job, it can be tough to find time to sit and breathe. Between our morning routines, commutes to and from work, the actual being at work, and how tired we are when we get home, finding time for ourselves is hard. There have been times when I get home and all I want to do is plop on the couch. Exercise? Bleh. Meditation? Meh. But it’s important that I get off my butt and do it. I usually meditate during my lunch break, but if I don’t have time, or if I’m too absorbed in the book I’m reading, I force myself to do it when I get home. I might not want to because I’m home now and would rather surf the web, play video games, write, or whatever, but I still meditate. And I always feel better afterwards.
When we don’t have much free time, taking care of ourselves is often the first thing that gets thrown out. But meditation is worth making time for. It’s easy, simple, and doesn’t take long, but the benefits are great. So whenever you can, wherever you are, take a few minutes to close your eyes and focus on your breath. Any thoughts that creep into your mind, just observe them. But don’t try to hold on to anything; let them pass you by. Everything will be there for you to pick up once you’re done.
So no excuses. You have five minutes of free time each day. Admit it. So give meditation a try. If it’s hard to focus, try listening to relaxing music. Just note, if you’re going to meditate outside, please remember to put on sunscreen first.