The leaves are turning. The weather is cooling. The season is changing. The transition from summer to fall can be a bit abrupt in the Pacific Northwest. Our late Indian Summers keep our sunshiny spirits high well into October and then BOOM — it’s time for scarves, boots, and rain jackets. Once Halloween hits, it’s off to the holiday races, so it’s important to keep our crazy brains in check — to keep our minds strong — so that we can sustain balance and remain steady amongst the flurry of year-end activities.
Sometimes, mental strength manifests as simple motivation — to continue to wake up early even as the days shorten, to make it through your long weekend run even when it’s a little too chilly for comfort outside, or to make it to your Sunday yoga class even when you might be slightly hungover from tailgating the day before. Instead of focusing on how many steps are between you and your next finish line — whatever form that might be — focus on the step right in front of you. Just get up, just get dressed, just go. The key is to start from where you are because once you make that first step, you won’t turn back.
So, the next time you’re feeling overwhelmed or lacking the motivation to make some moves, hit up this simple meditation to boost your mental strength:
Try it: Motivation Meditation
- Stop right where you are and focus on your breathing. No particular pattern or pace required, simply breathe deeply — this will help to relax and invigorate you, which creates the conditions for optimal performance.
- Once your breathing feels steady, "feel" for your intention. Don't try to think of something to do, instead see where your attention naturally goes. If a few things come to mind, just pick one thing, and turn it into a clear, action-oriented word/phrase.
- Take a deep inhale while thinking “I will...”
- Then exhale while thinking your intention. For example: Inhale "I will..." exhale "run hard today..." OR Inhale "I will..." exhale "stretch my hamstrings for 5 minutes..."
- Continue for at least 2 minutes so that even the action/task at hand begins to feel more easeful.
- Eventually, stop repeating the words, acknowledge the motivation you've created around your intention, and GO OUT THERE AND KICK SOME BOOTY!
Motivation is like a muscle. You gotta work it. Keep it simple. Keep it steady. Keep it strong, OMies.