The Exercise: As many times a day as you are able, give the mind a short rest. For the duration of three breaths ask the inner voices to be silent. Then open all your senses and just be aware – of color, sound, touch, and smell.
This was an interesting one for me this week (covering April 18-25) as first half of the week was spent in crying induced sinus infection (some very bad news received) and then crazed elation (previous very bad news tempered) and then frenzied packing and vacation. I can't go into the specifics yet of the first part of the week, but if you're wildly curious, drop me a note and I'll explain as best I can. The vacation was to the American west.
Opening my senses.
The sinus infection made breathing at best annoying, at its worst close to impossible. I love to travel, but I hate to fly, breathing in the pressurized air. I had to make conscious efforts to forget about things that were happening outside vacation, so the three breaths meditation was helpful to remind myself to be present where I was. My unconscious mind didn't get the memo, and I slept horribly, but during the day, I was completely present and able to breathe most of the time.
It was a wonderful time in Zion and Grand Canyon National Parks, but breathing became a bit of a problem. Between the sinus crud and the elevation, I was frequently shorter of breath than I'd anticipated. The same levels of effort at my normal elevation aren't a problem. At 4500ft+ it was not debilitating, but annoying.