Escalator meditation

There are all sorts of ordinary opportunities for calming down in the day to day rush of life. Escalators can be a very useful meditation device on a busy day! They are free, easy to use and available in Metro stations and department stores. Escalators provide a perfect opportunity to settle down and relax, after all there’s nothing much to do but stand there. There’s not enough time to finish the crossword or do some knitting, but there is time to reconnect with yourself.

The process couldn’t be easier, the hard part is remembering to do it.

  • Step 1: Get on the escalator safely, carefully avoid tripping over the toddler or bashing into the little old lady’s shopping trolley. This is probably the hardest bit of the whole process.
  • Step 2: Now you’re settled on the escalator, lightly grip the rail and bring your attention to your abdomen, becoming aware of the rythmn of your breathing. Don’t do anything to change it, just notice it, be aware of the rise and fall of each breath as the escalator moves on. You might like to relax your stomach muscles a little as you do this. Just continue to breath and to be aware of the breathing as the escalator moves on. Keep your eyes open, sometime soon you’re going to have to get off.
  • Step 3: When you get to the end of the escalator, release your grip and bring your attention to the business of getting off the escalator safely, once more avoiding the toddler and the shopping trolley. You may find that you can continue to be aware of your breathing as you do this. If so, bravo!

That’s all there is to it. A simple mindless occasion turned into a an opportunity to calm down by the application of a little awareness. This approach also works for lifts, and if you like a challenge: queues and bus journeys.

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