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How to commute without going bonkers
AFP-Relaxnews, September 6, 2012
NEW YORK, USA -- If you’re wondering how to trek to work without losing your mind, Emmy Award-winner and New York City-based meditation teacher David Nichtern offers up a few pointers on curbing commuter stress.
<< File photo of people commuting to work in New York. — Picture courtesy of shutterstock
“People think of spiritual practice as a tranquiliser,” Nichtern told fitness blog Well+Good NYC recently. “But I’m not from the school of ‘Let’s just chant something.’ My school is awareness. The more aware you are, the more likely you’re headed to a positive outcome.”
So, how to make your commute more mindful? He offers up a few ways to respond to common commute scenarios, as per his interview with Well+Good NYC.
Q: It’s sweltering on the subway, there is no air conditioning, and someone on the train is standing right next to you. How do you stay calm?
Q: You’re late and the train is running slow or you’re stuck in traffic. How to not stress out?
Nichtern: “I think we can look more at the whole attitude of situations. There’s an ancient Mayan quote that I love: ‘Change your attitude and relax as it is.’ One time, on the way to tai chi, I was late and stuck in a traffic jam with a siren blaring in my ear. I was frustrated until I realised that I was going to tai chi for the practice of calming down!”
Q: So what’s the best way to channel your energy toward something positive?
Nichtern: “Energy is neutral, and we tip it towards a negative or positive outcome with our attitudes. Each individual has to create their own positive environment by being mindful and aware.”
Q: Any calming audiobooks or podcasts you’d recommend during the commute?
Nichtern: “My Facebook page is loaded with stuff like that. And [leading meditation teacher] Pema Chodron has a lot of great audiobooks you can download.”