Vacationing in The Caribbean might be lovely, but there are smaller and cheaper moments of Zen right at your fingertips.

Five minutes. Our pastor said once we could all carve out five minutes a day just to pray. So I closed the classroom door the next day on my prep period and spent five minutes just talking to God. But it doesn’t have to be prayer. It can be stepping outside to watch the birds, to read a poem, or to listen to a song (“Riders on the Storm” by The Doors clocks in at 4:35. Just sayin’). Even a few minutes apart from the day can make a meaningful difference.

Ten minutes. In addition to my day job as a high school English teacher, I do private tutoring around San Diego. Sometimes I find myself in front of a house roughly ten minutes early. I take these ten minutes to focus, breathe, meditate, regroup. Even in the busiest of days, I can afford these 600 seconds. I suspect we all can, if we look ahead and plan a bit.

Fifteen minutes. Yesterday I took down our Christmas lights. Every year our side fence looks like The Griswald House in Christmas Vacation. So after removing the last strand, I set out a lawn chair, grabbed a cold 7-Up, and set my phone alarm for 15 minutes. As I sipped my soda, I looked at the cul-de-sac, the sky, and the clouds. Eventually the alarm buzzed, but only THEN did I venture to the OTHER side of the fence to gather and wrap up the seventy-two extension cords.

A Princess or Carnival cruise? Great. A trip to the Bahamas? Awesome. A romantic weekend in a Bed and Breakfast. Don’t mind if I do. But it turns out that basketball courts aren’t the only places where Fast Breaks can be beneficial. TZT