Self-Care Quest Day 18: Micro-Breaks

Many of us spend a good deal of time every week travelling, or waiting in queues. At such times we can’t get anything productive done, and knowing that can make these times feel frustrating. But there is a way you can transform "dead time" into an opportunity for introspection and relaxation. And that is to turn those times into micro-breaks: little spots of time in your day that you can use to take a rest and drop some stress.

When I was doing a lot of driving around teaching workshops, I grew to love that time as thinking time, or learning time. I had a collection of educational and inspirational lectures in the car, and enjoyed some alone time to listen without interruption.

I know several people who have transformed their commute time with meditation practices or thought provoking reading. And one of the best meditation experiences I've had was on a bus.

Next time you find your self on hold, or stuck in traffic try taking the opportunity to practice a simple mindfulness technique, or a breathing practice like the long exhale.

Waiting in queues is a great time to practice these techniques too, since you can do them without anyone noticing, you can appear to all the world like you are in line like everyone else, but instead of feeling impatient and checking your watch you can feel relaxed and check your posture. The amount of time you spend in that queue will be exactly the same, but the experience will be very different.

Take a moment to think about other time spots in your day that you could upgrade to be a more reflective and supportive experience for you.