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Views #1528 | High-Intermediate - B2

Meditation

Mark shares his thoughts on practicing meditation.
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Mark: Hey, Haruka. I have a question for you. Do you ever meditate?

Haruka: Only occasionally. I know it's very good for your mental health, but I forget all the time. Do you?

Mark: I do, but not in the most traditional or usual way. I don't sit in silence very often. I do that too sometimes, but I'll meditate either by going through a guided meditation, like a voice, someone telling me to relax your shoulders and focus on your breathing, et cetera. Or I meditate at other times like when I'm doing the dishes. I just focus on just the act of the water going over my hands or cleaning the dishes. And that's a form of meditation to me.

Haruka: Do you feel much better after that?

Mark: I feel calmer. I certainly feel more relaxed. Yeah. I feel like when I do that, my mind usually is going very fast and it's a good way to slow it down and bring it back to a more tolerable way of thinking.

Haruka: Is meditation similar to zoning out?

Mark: I guess, but to me, zoning out is letting your mind wander. Whereas meditation, you're bringing it to a single focal point.

Haruka: I see. Actually, I remember that I have used this app called Undo. It's a very simple three minutes or whatever minutes you choose. And it start with a bamboo sound. And I like it and I feel, yeah, much calmer after that meditation.

Mark: Yeah. I have the same app. That is the one time I will do a silent meditation. I'll use that app because, like you said, there's this bamboo sound at the beginning and a gong at the end, but it's just silent in between. Other than meditation, what else do you do when you get stressed out?

Haruka: Recently, I do try to do deeper breathing, inhale and exhale. And also looking at the window, mountains, skies, feeling the breeze. They are all very calming to me. How about you?

Mark: If I get stressed out or if I'm unhappy, I try to think about other people. What could I do for someone else to make them happy? How could I surprise someone, something like that.

Haruka: That's very nice of you.

Mark: Yeah, I guess. It just, it helps me. Because if I don't do tat, I will probably focus too much on whatever's making me unhappy or stressed out. But if I put my attention on someone else, that makes me happy.

Haruka: I love that way of thinking. I will try that.

Answer these questions about the interview.
Audio Lessons about Phrases and Vocabulary

the act of

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I just focus on the act of the water going over my hands

The phrase ‘the act of ’ means the actual doing of a thing, in this example water going down arms. Notice the following:

  1. The act of buying gifts always seems like a waste of money to me.
  2. The act of sitting in a quiet forest can be good for mental health

zoning out

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Is meditation similar to zoning out?

The phrase ‘zoning out’ means that you lose focus or concentration on something. Notice the following:

  1. My students often zone out in class.
  2. I always zone out when I am stuck in traffic.

let your mind wander

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Zoning out is letting your mind wander.

The phrase ‘to let your mind wander’ means that you allow your brain to think whatever it wants. This can be positive or negative. Notice the following:

  1. Whenever I let my mind wander, I just start worrying about things.
  2. In a boring class, it is easy to let your mind wander.

bring to a focal point

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You're bringing it to a single focal point.

The phrase ‘to bring to a single focal point’ means that you are concentrating and thinking of just one thing. Notice the following:

  1. If you get scared when flying, try to bring your mind to a focal point.
  2. When I meditate, I need to bring my mind to a focal point.

stress out

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What else do you do when you get stressed out?

The phrase ‘to be stressed out’ means that something is making you feel nervous, angry or worried.

  1. Can I help you? You seem to be stressed out.
  2. It is not important. Don't get stressed out about it.

Vocabulary Quiz

act • zone out • wander
focal point• stress out
  1. Breathe deeply and bring your mind to a .
  2. After a long day, it is easy to let your mind .
  3. It is common to in a long, boring meeting .
  4. Try not to when doing your taxes
  5. I miss the getting a nice letter in the mail.

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