Ready, Set, Meditate Do you need a little space? If the stress of daily life has built up, release it with a few minutes spent in meditation or deep thought. Here are three ways to get started. Prepare your place. If you’re going to clear your mind, it only makes sense to clear your physical space first. Banish clutter by doing a quick assessment of the room where you plan to meditate and then picking up and putting away anything (dirty coffee cups, laundry, toddler toys, etc.) that may distract you. You may also find it relaxing to light a candle, play instrumental music, or move to an outdoor space where you can listen to the sounds of a wind chime (try this pretty and practical Art Cross version). Identify the sensory experiences that fill you with peace and then bring those to your chosen meditation location. Prepare your mind. When you were physically prepping your space you tidied up by putting away any misplaced items and distractions. Before you can fully release any tension and allow thoughts to come naturally into the mind, you probably need to do a brain de-clutter. Grab a pen and journal, and jot down anything that comes to mind. For example, write down the grocery list, a reminder to make a dentist appointment, or a note to call the handyman. Whatever it is, get it out and on paper so that you can fully devote your attention to letting thoughts come naturally and getting in touch with your deepest self. Prepare your body. Slip into something comfortable. We’re talking yoga pants and a tee, gym shorts, or even jammies—whatever makes you feel relaxed and cozy. We especially like these Stop Talking Socks, which politely imply the shush-mode required for meditating. Sit cross-legged on the floor, lie down on a mat, or perch in your favorite armchair. Try to move as little as possible and maintain a strong, elongated spine—not rigid, but naturally sitting upright. In other words, you don’t want to be slumped into a meditation position. You want to be able to have control of your breath. To start clearing your mind, count your breaths and focus your attention on this practice. Once you have prepped, begin with the slow, counted breaths described above. Keep your focus here and try to stay in this state for 5-10 minutes, increasing your time as you feel appropriate. This practice can be an especially beneficial way to start or end your day. Tell us more! Do you meditate or de-clutter your mind? What are your favorite practices?