Sometimes a quick meditation is all it takes. Maybe you’re in the middle of a work day and want to come back to center, quickly. Or perhaps you’re running out the door and just want to start the day sharp. For those times, here are five powerful meditations that take just 3 minutes.

A few simple 3 minute meditations

A few simple 3 minute meditations

1) The Basic Breathing Meditation

This is the cornerstone of many types of meditation. It’s simple: focus your attention on your breath. Don’t try to change your breath or to control your breath. Instead, just let your awareness rest on your breath.

Any time you find yourself distracted, simply bring your attention back to the breath. This is a very pure and easy method for training attention and awareness.

2) The “Smell a Flower” Meditation

Find a flower. Any flower will do. Move close to the flower, so it’s just inches away from your face. Now, smell the flower. Really take it in. Put all your attention on the here and now, on just letting the flower permeate you. Do this for 3 minutes.

This meditation lets you take in the nourishing feeling of being in nature, without having to drive out of town. It’s also a fantastic way of focusing your attention.

3) The Full Body Scan

Starting from the very top of your head, move your attention down your body. Pay close attention to the subtle as well as not-so-subtle sensations in your body. When you reach the bottom of your body, start from the top again and move down.

This is meditation helps you notice new emotions and helps you gain insights about your emotional body. Almost every emotion you experience will have a corresponding physical sensation. By paying attention to physical sensations, you can learn a lot more about where your emotional body is at.

4) The Gratitude Meditation

Happiness researchers have found that one of the main keys to happiness is gratitude. This short meditation can give you a nice boost of gratitude – and happiness – at any time of day.

Think of something you’re grateful for. Let your mind rest on it and fully enjoy it. Experience all the gratitude you can for that one thing, then move on to the next thing. Keep doing this for three minutes, moving from one thing to the next. You’ll likely find that you feel completely refreshed afterwards!

5) Just Stop and Be Here

This meditation is based on the subtle yet profound idea that even trying to meditate can sometimes take you out of being present. Why? Because in trying to be present, your attention isn’t actually on the present moment. Instead, your mind is on the trying, instead of the being. So, what’s the answer?

To just stop. To do nothing. To just sit for three minutes and observe. Don’t try to meditate, don’t try to control your mind – just do nothing. Enjoy just being, without trying to control anything in any way.

These are five different 3-minute meditations you can use any time you want to feel more refreshed, more centered or more grateful. If one of these appealed to you, why not give it a try right now?