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You may wish to write a few notes after this exercise and, as you practise it, whether daily or weekly, your experience may change over time.

To do this mindful exercise, you need a chair and a quiet space where you won’t be distracted by people coming into it. Noises beyond the space are natural and are part of the exercise. Read through the exercise and then try it, as it’s best to do it with your eyes closed.

Sit with your back comfortably straight against the chair and with your feet flat on the ground.

Close your eyes and breathe normally, bringing your attention to your breath.

Gradually bring your attention to the crown of your head and just sense if there is “presence” here. Try not to “look” with your mind, but feel this part of your body and whether there is any energy or sensation there.

Now scan each part of your body, again simply bringing an awareness rather than looking. How does your right hand feel versus your left? Can you detect a slightly different level of presence? Are there areas where you can’t really detect any presence? Notice these areas; there is no need to try and change anything or do anything. 

When you have scanned your whole body, gently bring your focus back to the breath, bring your awareness into the room where you are sitting and, when you are ready, open your eyes.

More guided mindfulness exercises in Five Minutes to a Mindful You