Last Updated on October 8, 2020 by Paul Farrell, MRP, JD, PhD
“You’re at work and there’s so much going on around you and you have such an opportunity to be distracted or lash out. That, to me, is where my practice of meditation has really blossomed.
– Elizabeth Lesser, The New American Spirituality
“Only when I left the monastery and returned to the life of a wage-earner did it occur to me that for years my meditation practice had been exactly like one of those little bonsai trees, an exotic specimen, raised under carefully controlled conditions, pruned in accordance with the aesthetic of an exacting discipline, but essentially an indoor miniature that would not survive in the open as an ordinary tree.”
– Clark Strand, The Wooden Bowl, A Simple Meditation for Everyday Life
In all the other zones meditation is often an individual activity focused on your personal needs. In the relationship zone you must find ways to meditate in everyday situations, with people at work, socially, and with your family – it could be a business lunch, mentoring a young executive, chairing a civic activity, coaching your son’s soccer team, sharing an intimate moment with your spouse. Remember, you can turn every experience in life into a meditation, anything. It’s up to you.
Meditating in the Relationship Zone means putting the golden rule into action, making it part of your daily life, where deeply-held personal values inspire you to help other people, satisfy their needs, accomplish their goals.
Being of service to others is perhaps the one single message common to the teachings of all great spiritual traditions throughout history and across all cultures – it is also the one experience that gives each of us opportunities to transforming our everyday lives into meditation.
The Opportunities are Everywhere – Every Day… All Day… With Everyone
Take a moment, look around, your world is filled with many big and small ways to meditate throughout the day – in your relationships with loved ones and friends, in your business and social network, in public affairs, in your contacts with strangers on the street, in stores, the elevator, on the phone, online. Everyday we have an endless flow of opportunities to meditate with other people, as we work and play and socialize.
The key: Simply shift your focus. In a brief moment you can transform any relationship into a meditative experience. Remember the basic rules and focus on other people, ask yourself how you can be of service to them! That’s what’s so great about this simple approach to meditating – you call the shots, you’re the boss. You’re in charge of making whatever you’re doing a meditation, while reducing stress and increasing your energy – it’s an easy decision!
Start by looking around today. Keep it simple. The opportunities are everywhere. Here are ten ways of meditating in this Relationship Zone, suggestions about how you can blend your world of individual meditating with your relationships in business, family and socially. Remember, this is highly personal area. In the final analysis, your task is to find ways that work for you.
Think Outside the Traditional Meditation “Box” – Start Action Meditating in the “Eternal Now!”
Once you begin thinking outside the box about what can or can’t be a “meditation,” you come to realize that in fact anything really can become a meditation, anything you’re doing during the business day – whether leading, supporting your colleagues, or working in a team. You soon understand that a Mastermind group is a perfect way for hard-nosed executives to meditate with others in today’s stressful business world, without making a big deal of it.
Napoleon Hill discovered that whenever two or more executives joined forces in a common purpose, they were guided by powerful, yet unseen forces that make them far more powerful than each working separately. Together they can go beyond what we know as synergism in the business world, to become a team led by a third mind – the Mastermind – and from this experience you can create a powerful meditation, and grow rich in spirit and in fact. It works.
Just Keep Experimenting Knowing that You are Being Guided
Which zone is “the best” one for you? The Mental Zone may still be your favorite. But more likely it will be in the Sports Zone, or the Creativity Zone, where 80% of Americans already actively and naturally meditate every day. And yes, often here in the Relationship Zone. Actually, in all of them, because life is a moving target and so are meditation opportunities.
Most likely you’ll end up putting together an eclectic, highly personal combination you invent and customize all by yourself and for yourself, with a little of this and a little of that, adjusting on the move, depending on the time of day, the season, your life cycle, personal crises, people around you, work pressures, your precise location on the earth’s surface, and so on.
The truth is, everything in life is in a state of flux, always. You stay flexible, living in the moment and open to the inevitable, the unexpected, new challenges and opportunities. And in the flow of events, the best moments will be times when the entire day was a meditation – even though you may not realize until later, when you’re filled with warm feelings of gratitude about a special relationship.
Trust Yourself … and that Still Small Voice Within You
You are a totally unique personality. There’s nobody like you, never was, never will be. So trust your instincts. Experts and amateurs will tell what they think is the best way for you. Listen to them. But in the end, you make the decision, and you live with it. Trust yourself, you will come up with the meditation program that fits you perfectly. Yes, it will take some experimenting, but that’s part of the challenge, and the fun in every journey of self-discovery.
Remember The Buddha’s greatest wisdom teaching:
“Believe nothing, no matter where you read it or who has said it, not even if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”
About the Author
Dr. Farrell is a Behavioral Economist. His books include The Millionaire Code; The Millionaire Meditation: Stress Management for Wall Street, Corporate America & Entrepreneurs; The Zen Millionaire; The Winning Portfolio; Expert Investing on The Net; Mutual Funds on The Net; and The Lazy Person’s Guide to Investing.
He also published 1,643 columns on DowJones-MarketWatch and for years was their #1 traffic-generating columnist. Before the Internet, he edited & published FNX: Future News Index, a financial newsletter for stock market traders. Earlier he was a Wall Street investment banker with Morgan Stanley, Executive Vice President of the Financial News Network; and Associate Editor of the Los Angeles Herald Examiner.
He has a Doctorate in Psychology, Juris Doctor, Masters in Regional Planning and Bachelor of Architecture. He worked on the Esalen organic farm and served in the U.S. Marine Corps as Staff Sergeant in aviation computer technology.