Thursday, October 23, 2014

‘Mindful’ Commuters Say Deep Breaths, Clear Mind Keep Them Calm Under Stress

As harried commuters filed aboard a Metro Red Line train at Cleveland Park — jockeying for seats, hoisting bulging tote bags — Denise Keyes gazed straight ahead, took deep breaths and searched for inner peace.
There were no lit candles, no incense, no chanting of “om.” But Keyes was meditating.
Finding stillness on a subway during rush hour might sound impossible. But those who practice “mindful commuting” swear it brings tranquility to the daily misery of crowded trains, late buses, honking horns and traffic jams.
If it sounds too New-Agey or out there for you, consider this: Almost 2 million people use one meditation-on-the-go app, and plenty of others are downloading what has been a recent explosion of guided meditation podcasts and Web recordings. Others, like Keyes, take mindfulness classes.
“It gets me into the mind-set I want to be in for work,” said Keyes, who lives in Bethesda and is a senior associate dean at the Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Studies. “I want to be somebody who — not to sound all Oprah — but I want to be my best self. I want to be compassionate and really listen to people. This helps me do that.”
Potomac resident Nancy Kaplan, 63, said she initially hesitated to tell colleagues about her mindful driving because she didn’t want them to think she was “involved in woo-woo stuff.” (MORE)
Source: Washington Post

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