Now, some people may still consider meditation as a strictly spiritual practice. Something reserved for chakra juggling mystics after new moon parties. However, tons of scientific research credit meditation and mindfulness with reducing anxiety, improving cognition, and decreasing distraction.
The power of compound interest is simple. In financial terms, it means we earn interest on both our initial investment along with whatever interest has already been earned. If we invest $100 and compound 1% interest every day, in one year we’ll have $3,778.34. That’s an increase of 37x!
We considered this 8th world-wonder and my last few weeks of meditation. Practicing mindfulness, to put it simply, is the act of pulling ourselves back into the present moment. When we make the decision to stop and focus, to be grateful, to notice our emotions without trying to change them, we not only improve the quality of the present, but invest in our ability to be mindful in the future.
The moments we spend being mindful compound and pay interest in the form of clarity, gratitude, and presence.
Think about the example of compound interest above and consider how becoming just 1% more mindful each day could add up over a lifetime. We may not see 30-day-money-back-guaranteed results, but compounding small improvements every day leads to huge growth down the road.
First. Taste your food.
We’ve all been there, starving as our slice of pizza arrives, ready to devour. We take a bite, pull out our phone, starting thinking about what so-and-so said last night. Before we know it—the food is gone and we have no recollection of chewing.
During your next meal, focus on those first few bites. Notice the smell. Identify the flavors. Tune into your body and mind during the meal. Resist the urge to solve problems or think about your schedule, this is your time to eat.
Second. When you go from sitting to standing—check in.
Moving from one position to another gives us a chance to check-in with ourselves.
When you stand up from your workspace, are you in a hurry? That’s fine, don’t try to change it. Just notice it.
When you sit back down does your mind begin to rush towards the rest of your day before finishing the task at hand? Gently reel yourself back to the present. Close your eyes, take a breath and focus on what’s happening right now. This only takes a few seconds.
Third. Write down 3 things you’re grateful for every morning.
This is a tip we learned from using The Five Minute Journal. For how easy it is and for how little time it takes, I cannot express enough how much of an impact doing this consistently has had on my overall satisfaction with life. If you only incorporate one thing from this post, make it this.
Fourth. When you walk…
Don’t let your monkey mind crawl around the cage while you stroll. Instead, feel the weight of your feet pressing against the asphalt with each step. Notice the temperature of the air on your face and hands.
You don’t even need to make time to “go for a walk.” Do this when you walk to your car in the morning. Do it when you walk towards your bed at night. When you walk, be present.
Whether it’s embarking on a 30-day meditation challenge or just remembering to be a little more grateful once in awhile, remember—the power of compound interest is happening all around us.
Will you let it work for you, or against you?