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3 Minute Practices: A Map to Wellness and Self-Compassion

Updated: Nov 22, 2023

There are some quick and simple mindfulness-based practices which can be done every day, any day, any time of day for only around 1 to 3 minutes at a time. When we think about how much time we have through our day, normally around 14 hours, 3 minutes peppered here and there is a great investment in your well-being which can make a wonderful difference in how you feel, think and behave.

It’s important to engage each and every part of ourselves: body, mind, heart and spirit.

The nature of these exercises is to be simple, doable, no pressure, flexible, no matter how you are feeling or where you are. They increase health benefits and help build resilience, along with increasing patience with yourself and others. We do these practices safely, with conscious intention, and with awareness.

Here is an added challenge: do one or a combo of the practices for up to 20 minutes for at least one day of one week! Most importantly: enjoy and be kind!


Standing or sitting, Pause

  • I take 3 deep, long, gentle breaths

  • As I keep breathing, I allow my weight and shoulders to drop towards the ground, and allow my head, face and neck to feel relaxed and light

  • Any contractions, tension I feel inside the body, on an exhale, I release the tension and let it flow outside of my body

Activity ideas

  • Walking to the car, bus stop or when in transit.

  • On a bio break I count for 20 seconds when washing my hands, noticing when I inhale and making my exhalations longer than the inhalation, taking deep, long, gentle breaths.


Pause, breathe and say:

  • It’s ok to take time to slow down and rest, even just a few minutes many times a day

  • I am always learning

  • I can allow my mind to quiet

  • I am enough

Activity ideas

  • I say to myself: I will get distracted and that’s normal. I return again and again to practicing and that’s all part of training my brain.

  • I identify and write down thoughts, notice if they are helpful or unhelpful, and ask: how does this thought serve me?


Pause and breathe:

  • I name my current emotion (s)

  • Where inside my body is the emotion felt? What is the sensation like?

  • I acknowledge and allow my emotions to just be, I don’t try to change them, I stay curious and open

Activity ideas

  • I pick one (or more) feelings lists or feelings wheel(s), images (Google search). Where can I keep it handy and visible? Printed? On my device?

  • I remember and say to myself: The nature of feelings is to not make sense. I acknowledge and accept my feelings, pleasant or unpleasant. They are messengers guiding me to an action or need.


Pause, say with the inhale and exhale

  • I see, acknowledge and allow what’s here and now pleasant or unpleasant. It just is.

  • I accept there are always ebbs and flows around me. It is the rhythm of life.

  • I have gifts unique to me to share and give to those around me.

Activity ideas

  • How can I display kindness to myself and those around me today?

  • What gets in the way of me being kind to myself and others? How do I know if I am kind or not? What do I say and do? Who can help me notice?

  • What is my intention for the day, how will I give? What will I practice saying and doing?

You can find these tips and additional ones signing up for the Love Yo' Self Challenge. Check it out!

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