University of Vermont


Engage Mindfulness

Audio and Video Exercises

Body Scan (Audio: 19 Minutes)

This guided meditation is an introduction to cultivating mindful awareness in your life. The exercise focuses on bringing nonjudgemental, moment-to-moment attention to each part of the body. The key to this practice is to maintain an accepting attitude, gently noticing and letting go of thoughts,

Many people find that this exercise helps them become more relaxed right away, while others find that they become aware of sensations they hadn't noticed before. Over time, regular practice can help reduce anxiety, manage panic and other uncomfortable physical sensations, improve sleep problems, cultivate self-acceptance of the body, and deepen concentration and mindfulness.

Breathing for Relaxation (Audio: 10 minutes)

This is a brief breathing exercise for cultivating physical and mental relaxation. The exercise teaches you to slow down your breath, and to equalize the length of your in-breath and out-breath. It then gives you optional instructions to deepen the feelings of relaxation by briefly holding the breath before you exhale, and by slowing down the exhalation. This exercise should feel comfortable at all times—if you find any part of it difficult or stressful, please adjust the practice to make it more comfortable, or return to any portion of the instruction that feels good. Once you have learned this breathing practice you can do it on your own any time, anywhere.

Breathing Space (Audio: 3 minutes)

The breathing space is a brief meditation that can help you center yourself throughout the day. At first, it is helpful to practice it in an upright seated position with your eyes closed, listening to the recording. Once you have become familiar with the practice, you can do it with your eyes open, at any time/place. You can lengthen or shorten to practice according to your needs. Some suggested times for taking a breathing space - when you wake up, before the first bite of a meal, before an exam, waiting in line, while stopped at a red light or in traffic, waiting for your computer to start, before bed, any time you feel stressed or anxious.

Gatha Meditation (Meditation verses) (Audio: 11 Minutes)

"Gathas" are short verses that are recited silently along with the rhythm of the breath. The purpose of reciting gathas is to provide a stronger anchor to keep your attention focused on the breath during meditation. For many people, the practice of silently reciting gathas is an easier way to learn to focus the attention than other kinds of meditation. This practice should be done sitting in a comfortable position in a chair or on the floor, relaxed with your back straight, in an environment that is free from distractions.

Gentle Yoga Sequence (Video: 12 Minutes)

This brief sequence of gentle yoga postures may be used as a preparation for meditation, or as a stand-alone practice. These postures will provide you with an experience of gentle muscle toning and stretching as you become more attuned to bodily sensations. Yoga is a practice of "mindfulness in motion" and so embodies the attitudes of non-judgmental presence and self-acceptance. Listen to your body, and only go as far as you feel comfortable with any exercise, e.g. ease out of a stretch or release a posture if it is causing pain.

Lovingkindness Meditation (Audio: 16 Minutes)

An essential component to mindfulness is an attitude of kindness, or unconditional friendliness. This traditional guided meditation is based on the idea that we all possess some degree of kindness, and by focuses on the kind feelings we already have, we can increasingly expand and cultivate our ability to experience our kind heart towards ourselves, people in our lives, and, ultimately, all beings. At first the phrases in this meditation may feel artificial or awkward. Alternatively, you may feel strong emotions, or you may feel nothing at all. Try to stay with the practice with a nonjudgmental attitude of open curiosity, and see what happens. As you become comfortable with the practice, you can try extending loving kindness spontaneously to people you meet throughout your day - e.g. friends, family members co-workers, people you pass in the street, people in the other cars.

Safe Place Guided Visualization (Audio: 10 minutes)

Guided imagery is a means to calm yourself, change your mood, or take a vacation in your mind. The most important part of using imagery is that you use all of your senses as you are visualizing. This particular guided visualization helps you imagine a safe place that you can go to at any time. You can do this visualization sitting upright in a comfortable and supported position or lying down.

Sitting Meditation (Audio: 15 Minutes)

Sitting meditation is the most basic mindfulness practice. Though the instructions are very simple, the practice can be difficult. This exercise will guide you in a brief experience of the basic practice of sitting meditation. Find a comfortable seat in a place where you will not be distracted. Sit on a chair or on the floor (a cushion or meditation bench is recommended), with your back upright and unsupported, if possible. The first half of the exercise presents guided meditation instructions. The last 7 minutes are silent. The meditation session ends with the ringing of a chime.

Above recordings created by Miriam “Miv” London, PhD and Martine Luntz, PsyD

Additional Meditation Recordings

Meditation Recordings for the
Attention Improvement with Mindfulness Group

Recordings created by Mark Reck, Psy.D.

Mindfulness of the Breath (5 Minutes)

For weeks 1 and 2, this guided meditation is a shorter and adapted version of many, longer sitting meditations, whereby the breath is the focus of the practice. The meditation ends with the ringing of a bell.

Mindfulness of Breath-Body-Sound (10 Minutes)

For weeks 3-5, this guided meditation expands the mindfulness of the breath practice, not only by length of time, but also in using the body and sounds as additional foci for mindfulness. This meditation may aid in being able to adapt body sensations and sounds (noises) into regular mindfulness practice, as opposed to resisting them or becoming frustrated with their presence when focusing on the breath. The meditation ends with the ringing of a bell.

Mindful Presence (15 Minutes)

For weeks 6 and 7, this guided meditation begins with mindfulness of the breath practices as done previously, eventually transitioning into shifting attention in taking an "observer stance" or "meta-awareness" perspective of whatever comes into experience without necessarily judging what arises, seeking to push it away, or entertaining it by becoming engrossed in the experience. Instead, this meditation helps to cultivate a non-grasping orientation to whatever arises, likening the experiences of mind to clouds being gently blown across a blue sky. The meditation ends with the ringing of a bell.

Last modified February 01 2017 03:02 PM