“Being quiet and meditating on sound is something completely different.”   Karlheinz Stockhausen

This morning at the gym I listened. I closed my eyes and just listened. First, I became more aware of the voices. Some clear—I could understand the words—and some not as clear—just recognizable as voices. Then I heard the music being piped throughout the gym above my head. (Not too loud thank goodness.)

Then, more startling sounds. The clanking of weights. The bursting open of the front door. The sound of the pounding running on the treadmill behind me.

Then, quieter. The soft whirring of the elliptical machine beneath me as I continued my steady circular movement of the pedals. When you focus on sound you are in the present. Sound is not in the future or the past.

We have begun our Well-Being Program for Executive Directors. Already executives are sharing that introducing (or reintroducing in some cases) mindfulness practices, meditation etc. into their lives is making a difference. They have identified significant stresses and challenges in their work. (Familiar?) Yet, they have chosen to take time to learn and try mindfulness, and to share with and support their peers doing the same. It is inspiring.

Try being quiet.  Close your eyes and focus on sounds. Five minutes of closing your eyes and listening is refreshing. Need another reason? Research tells us that mindfulness practices improve leadership effectiveness.

There are many ways to bring this into your life and they don’t require a lot of time. Here are some free resources you can explore:  www.palousemindfulness.com, http://marc.ucla.edu/.

What is your experience?  Please share it with our community by commenting here.