This is one of the best techniques I’ve found to bring me into the moment (or help me fall asleep).
Here it is: Count your breaths (inhale/exhale) from one to four. Then start over again at one.
Just try it.
It’s amazing how often I’ll get to “16, 17…” without even realizing it. My mind tends to go off on its own tangents – usually things it thinks I should be worried about – yet the counting part of my mind will roll right along, with increasing numbers, until I catch myself.
I usually laugh. And then I start over at ‘one’.
I mean, this is when I’ve already made a decision to be present, to count. Yet still, I think my record was something like 37 breaths before I noticed I wasn’t paying attention.
What I love is that if I can actually stay focused on the breath, if I can stay present enough to do the one-to-four count over and over…I almost always fall asleep quickly.