Living outside of Your Head

We went on an incredible journey to Marfa, TX with the Techstars Austin Summer 2014 group. I took away a ton of deeper relationships with great people, and some of the greatest memories I have. Like the mayor and his friend serenading our backyard BBQ with traditional border music. Not random at all. 


My favorite session on that trip was a Zen meditation workshop with Nick Terry, a 25-year Zen meditation practitioner living in Marfa. He basically oozed calm. Nick lead a circle of about 40 of us that get too little sleep, compulsively answer emails and alerts on our phones, and work 60+ hours a week on the regular. The normal startup life. Nick was the antithesis of what our life had been during the first half of the program. He also significantly changed my day-to-day.

I meditate almost every day now, sometimes more. Meditation takes practice so right now I only stay focused for 15-30 minutes. If you know me, it's a good chunk of time for me to be focused. Those short sessions bring me outside of my head to find balance. 

Sit straight up with perfect posture, close your eyes. Live in the moment and hear and feel everything happening around you-- almost like building a mental image of your surroundings --and let your mind focus on the outside world. 

I don't work during meditation, only focus on my surroundings to live in the moment. I come out of that with a clearer head and the highest point of mental focus that day. That's when I quickly cleanse whatever is weighing on my brain and prioritize my mental to-do list. 

Throughout the day, take small actions to stay relaxed and in control. The toughest suggestion to be consistent with is taking a deep breath before you pick up your phone. As soon as an alert hits-- breathe --and then pick it up. I find it incredibly difficult but relaxing when I'm working too fast.

Try reading Being Zen: Bringing Meditiation to Life by Ezra Bayda