Meditation: hippy nonsense?

26/4/2013 |


Many people will tell you that allowing time and space to listen to your emotions, listen to your heart and just be mindful is either a waste of time or somehow ‘hippy psychobabble’.

The Ninja knows differently – knows that it’s all about perception and there’s a greater force inside of us that we can channel towards fulfillment, success and changing the world. A bad day can be as much about what’s going on in your head as what’s going on in the office.


I take a wide definition of meditation here that includes:

  • sitting quietly staring at a beautiful view
  • praying
  • free writing
  • other creativity pursuits
  • Yoga
  • walking (if the purpose is to walk, not to arrive!)
  • and many other things.


I spent about four years being interested in meditation, dabbling in it and yet never really finding the time for it (or put another way, the energy to prioritise it). Then, in conversation with a meditation teacher one day, where I was doing my usual monkey brain thing of asking for the “best book recommendation” or “best podcast”, this meditation teacher looked me in the eye and said, “Dude, just sit”. And really that was all I needed to hear.

There are a million versions of the perfect way to meditate, a million people trying to attach their own meaning or pseudo-religious explanation for it, but at its heart, to meditate is just to sit and do nothing. Listen to the silence. It’s unnerving at first but you’ll learn to enjoy it.



Meditation can be hard. It requires practice. But get into the swing of it and you can meditate pretty much anywhere: from crowded tubes to driving along the motorway, from walking home to queuing in the supermarket. And if you’re new to it – or you just want to make it as easy as possible for yourself – a great tip would be to get an app for your phone or some kind of guided audio meditation series.

My favourite is a simple and rather delightful iPhone and Android app called ‘buddhify’. It brands itself as ‘Modern Meditation. To Go’ and is simple, accessible and fun.

For just a couple of pounds it means you have a wealth of short, guided meditations at your fingertips, each designed to help you experience clarity, connection, stability and embodiment. The audios even come purpose built to suit wherever you happen to be, with options for travelling, walking, the gym or the home.

Oh, and just so you’re clear, buddhify doesn’t pay me to mention them; I just use the app, I think it’s cool and I think you will too!


Like this? Try these

Try one of our alternatives to Time Management workshops

How The Elephant and the Monkey can make you happy «

A Guide to Meditation for the Rest of Us – Lifehacker


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