When I participated in the Real Happiness Challenge last year, the idea of mental noting, thinking of words while breathing stuck with me. And it stuck with me long after the challenge, to the point that it’s the method I continue to rely on the most when I find myself in stressful situations and need to ground myself or when my brain is moving a million miles a minute and I need to slow down or concentrate on one thing at at time.
As Sharon suggests, I think of the words “in” when I inhale and “out” with the exhale. These simple one-syllable words help me focus on my breath while also limiting other thoughts that might try to creep in. I’ve tried other words for my mental noting, but I always return to “in” and “out.”
Not only is mental noting one of my favorite meditations, but I also meditated today in my backyard with the sun hitting my face. I’m so thankful for this challenge for reminding me of many important things in life, including the importance of taking time for myself as well as getting outside and breathing in some fresh air.