​”Whenever your mind becomes scattered, use your breath as the means to take hold of your mind again.”

When I included this quote from Thich Nhat Hahn’s book The Miracle of Mindfulness in my Daily Bell, it got a wide welcome on social media.

I think that’s because it’s an example of how we can use the simplest of mindfulness practices to bring calm and focus to the mind.

When your thoughts are “all over the place” you can focus your awareness again by bringing your attention to your breath, for instance at the entrance to your nostrils.

What could be simpler? If you try this a number of times every day it will quickly establish it as a way to focus yourself, to gain some balance and perspective even in busy situations.

Try it and see what happens.

By the way, if you don’t like focussing on your breath, bring mindfulness instead to the feeling of your feet against the soles of your shoes, to what your hands are doing, the sensation of walking etc.

You don’t have to close your eyes to do mindful breathing, nor do you have to adopt any strange positions! So you can use it in numerous situations – it’s a portable de-stressor.

Here’s more from Thich Nhat Hahn on mindful breathing.


*image from plumvillage.org