How to Settle the Mind

Three ways to rest the mind so you can experience the joy of mental stillness.

Yury Velikanov/Adobe Stock

Sometimes, you get lucky in life, when the most important thing you need to do turns out to also be the simplest. One example is breathing. Breathing is the most important thing we need to do in our lives, and for most of us, it is also the easiest thing we ever do. If you belong to the population of people who can breathe effortlessly, you are so lucky! The same turns out to be true for meditation, that the simplest skill in meditation is also the most important. What is it? The simplest, most fundamental, most basic, and most important meditative skill of all is the ability to settle the mind.

What does it mean to settle the mind? Pretend you have a snow globe that you are constantly shaking. If I ask you to settle the snow globe, what do you do? You put it on the table, or the floor, or any other stationary surface. One of the literal meanings of the word settle is “to come down onto a surface.” You literally settle the snow globe down, that is all. So easy. Once the snow globe is settled, then over time, the water…