Steve Jobs: 6 Brain Training Exercises

Steve Jobs is the person who changed the world of IT – technologies,
for many years practiced meditation awareness. It helped him relieve stress, clear his mind and develop creativity.

“If you sit down and will just observe yourself, then will find, your mind is how uneasy. And when you will try to calm it, the situation will only worsen. If after a while the mind nevertheless calms down, to you the thinnest things will open.

The intuition will become aggravated, vision will clear up, you will be able to feel in the present timepoint – here and now. Your thoughts will slow down, consciousness will extend, and you will see immeasurably more, than before”. 

A special kind of meditation – meditation awareness, originates in Zen Buddhism and Taoism. Jobs told about it to the biographer shortly before death, by that moment he practiced meditation many years.

In those days it was something exotic, but jobs was ahead of his time and here. Today positive impact of meditation is proved by neuroscience, and such giants as Google, General Mills, Target and Ford, specially train the employees approximately in the same meditation which Jobs opened for himself a decade ago.


Judging by the quote, the meditation practiced by Jobs is very similar to the one practiced by the famous master of martial arts Yang Jwing Ming. Here is his lesson, which includes six basic steps:

Step #1: Breathing

Sit cross-legged in a secluded, quiet location, preferably on a flat pillow to reduce tension in the back. Start breathing deeply.

Step #2: Listen to yourself

Close your eyes and listen to your inner monologue, to the thoughts that jump in your head: work, home, family… This is the fussy chatter of your “Monkey Mind.” Don’t try to stop it at least not now. Just watch your mind jump from one thought to another. Repeat this exercise 5 minutes a day for a week.

Step #3: “Ox Mind”

Without trying to calm your thoughts, try to switch your attention to your “Ox Mind”, that is, to the part of your mind that thinks calmly and slowly. “Ox Mind” simply observes the world around, does not give estimates, does not look for meanings, just sees, hears and feels. Most people do not even know about it, although it can open up to someone in moments of turmoil, when the “Monkey Mind ” falls silent. But even when we are completely at the mercy of the “Monkey Mind”, when we hear ” Soon! Come on!” our  “Ox Mind ” imperceptibly continues its unhurried, thorough work.

Step #4: Wolf

As you begin to realize your “Ox Mind” ask him to gradually slow down the work of “Monkey Mind”. Jobs, for example, helped such a reception: he imagined how “Wolf” slowly wanders along the road, and this spectacle lulls the “Monkey Mind”. Do not worry if he wakes up from time to time. Monkeys, they are. Nevertheless, you will find that he began to rest more than fuss and make noise.

Step #5: Here and now

After calming your “Monkey Mind”, continue to focus on the”Wolf Mind”. And then your breathing will slow down. You will feel the skin touch of air. You may feel the blood running inside your body. If you open your eyes – the world around you will seem a little different, new and even kind of strange. Let’s say the window becomes just a rectangle filled with light. It does not need to be opened or closed, repaired or washed. It simply is-here and now. Like yourself-here and now.

Step #6: Freedom

It will take some time to reach this state. But if you did everything correctly, you will not feel the time that has passed from the moment when you turned on the timer to the moment when it turned off. Gradually, day by day, increase the duration of meditation. Surprisingly, no matter how long it lasts, you will not feel the flow of time.


Regular practice of mindfulness meditation gives three undoubted advantages:

1. You will get rid of stress. Even if there are difficulties in your life, they are unlikely to develop into serious unrest.

2. Through regular practice you will be able to forget about insomnia.

3. Begin to think more clearly and more accurately assess everything that happens in your life.

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