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Guided Meditation

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A short guided meditation can support the transition from active engagement with a topic to a quiet, reflective state of mind that enables new perspectives to take root, and wisdom and insight to emerge.


This method is used to create a silent pause for retreating inward. A short meditation can bring balance to a workshop in which participants are actively engaging, expressing themselves, and connecting to others. By calming the chatter of the mind, taking time to feel their breath and their body, people become more open to new perspectives and insights. In Theory U, this act of ‘presencing’ gives us access to our deepest source of knowledge and our most authentic self, which is the foundation of effective leadership towards transformation. The script of the guided meditation can be deliberately crafted to include details related to the case at hand and the perspective shift aimed for in the workshop (for example, including non-human perspectives, a deep sense of time, or a sense of sacredness and belonging).


  1. Write a script for the guided meditation prior to the workshop;
  2. Start by asking participants to sit on their chairs in a relaxed,
    but relatively upright position;
  3. Explain the purpose of the meditation and the approximate
  4. Invite them to close their eyes and retreat from the stimulation
    of the outside world;
  5. Start the meditation. Speak clearly and slowly and allow
    participants time to picture the images you describe;
  6. At the end of the meditation script, leave some time for silence;
  7. (optional) Reflect on the experience in pairs or in the group, noting any specific feelings or insights that stood out.

Sample Script

Sit back and relax. You may close your eyes. If this is uncomfortable, soften your gaze and rest your eyes at a specific point on the floor in front of you. During this meditation, just relax and listen to my voice, nothing is required of you. Allow any images, words, thoughts, feelings, sensations or memories that come up: everything is welcome. Place one hand on your belly, for a moment just be aware of your breath and of the rising and falling of your belly under your hand. Now imagine you are outside, standing with your bare feet in the grass, in a wide meadow, with trees around and cows grazing in the distance. The temperature outside is just pleasant and there is a soft, pleasantly cooling breeze blowing. You feel it on the skin of your face, in your hair and you breathe in the fresh air. You savour this breeze. There are some birds singing, and while listening to their sounds you feel as free as these birds. You look at the wide blue open sky, and you feel as wide as the sky. The sun is shining, you feel its warmth on your face, on your chest and on your belly. You feel warm and full of light, just like the sun. All is peaceful and there is a calmness coming over you. There is an ant slowly crawling onto your feet and you don’t mind. You realize that you are a part of this peaceful world, and deep down you feel connected to all of it: the birds, the trees, the cows and even the ant on your foot. In your own way, you say thank you to this life. Now take a deep breath, open your eyes, give your body a little stretch and focus your mind again on the next exercise.

Place on U
2-10 minutes
Materials Needed

(optional) A timer with a relaxing gong or bell sound.

Emotional Intelligence
Online Engagement
Disruptive Practices
Tip and Experiences
  • Do not be afraid of silence - integrate pauses into the guided meditation;
  • If the room is crowded and/or noisy, ensure participants can hear you by staying close to them and raising your voice a little, without disturbing others in the room;
  • Practice reading the script; time yourself and perhaps even record yourself and listen back.

Relevant References & Resources

Capurso, Fabbro, & Crescentini (2014). Mindful Creativity: The Influence of Mindfulness Meditation on Creative Thinking.

Horan (2009). The Neuropsychological Connection Between Creativity and Meditation.

Video: “Meditation 101: A Beginner’s Guide.”

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