Clear Your Mind: A Coffee Break Tale from our Archives

Woman sitting in yoga pose

Relax with this amusing short story by Dawn Knox


And… relax. But as Jenny was quickly discovering, it wasn’t that easy

Pulling her foot on to her thigh with both hands, Jenny gasped with pain as her knee twisted. Surely meditation and mindfulness wasn’t supposed to hurt! How could people relax and empty their minds if their joints were being dislocated?

Cramp seized her calf and she decided if she was going to attempt meditation at all that afternoon, she’d better sit cross-legged.

Now, what had the article about mindfulness said?

It’d all made sense when she’d read it that morning but now, she couldn’t remember the breathing rhythm. Well, she wasn’t going to break the spell and look for the magazine now.

Don’t worry, she thought. She wasn’t likely to forget to breathe, was she? She needed to move on and enter a deeper level of consciousness so she could attain the clarity of mind the article promised.

“Empty, empty,” her inner voice commanded.

Did I empty the dishwasher? she wondered. I need to tidy up in case Matt comes round tonight.

“Empty, empty,” her inner voice said in the disappointed tone that teachers use when students fail to grasp the importance of the lesson being delivered.

The fridge is empty. I’ll pop out later and get steak…

“Empty, empty!” insisted the inner voice. How could it be so hard to clear her mind of all the trivial, cluttering thoughts? Perhaps she needed a different word…

“Peace, peace,” suggested her inner voice, obligingly.

But it wasn’t peaceful at all. Jenny was aware of the next door neighbour’s television blaring, the traffic hum from outside and the kitchen clock ticking.

In the quiet, her phone sounded like a hysterical bee

How much longer should she meditate? She had so much to do before Matt came round.

“Peace, peace,” demanded her inner voice more irritably.

The article had recommended imagining a blank sheet of paper and watching it grow until it filled the mind.

The paper had grown to about A3 proportions when her mobile phone buzzed. She’d taken the precaution of turning it to silent before meditating and normally, she wouldn’t have heard it but in the relative quiet, it sounded like a hysterical bee.

Perhaps it’s Matt…

Although more likely, it was the double-glazing company whose calls she’d been avoiding the last few days.

Well, she’d check when she’d finished meditating and if it wasn’t Matt, she’d phone him and find out if he was coming this evening. After all, they hadn’t made firm plans. He’d dropped by last Thursday and said he’d see her this week. It was now Wednesday.

But what with working late most evenings and watching football with his mates, he didn’t have a lot of time to spend with her. Not much at all.

Despite working so many hours, he never seemed to have much money. If they shared a meal, it had been cooked and paid for – by her.

“Peace!” shrieked her inner voice.

Perhaps it was time to end the relationship

Jenny felt ashamed of her negativity and despite knowing she ought to be clearing her mind, she actively sought some positive thoughts about Matt.

His smiling face replaced the blank sheet of paper. She felt that familiar feeling as if her insides were melting. He was so handsome with his fringe that flopped over one eye and that slightly crooked grin. And those eyes!

“Those eyes,” echoed her inner voice dreamily.

And charm? He oozed charm.

“Charm,” said her inner voice with a sigh. “Phone him,” it added.

And yet… Deep down, Jenny wanted more commitment than Matt seemed willing to give. Perhaps she’d wait for him to phone her.

Perhaps it was time to end the relationship.

Relationship? Wasn’t that a rather over-optimistic description of what they shared?

Suddenly, Jenny knew what to do. She hobbled to the phone on stiff legs.

Would the message be from Matt, or the double-glazing company?

If it’s not from Matt, I’ll finish with him, she decided.

“Are you sure?” asked her inner voice anxiously.

“I am,” she replied.

“Good evening, Madam, I’m calling to ask if you’d like a free estimate to replace your windows…”

“No thanks, but I really appreciate you phoning,” she said with a smile.

It was amazing how meditation cleared your mind and helped you make decisions, she thought.


Read lots more lovely stories like this in My Weekly every week.


More fun free online stories


Karen Byrom

My coffee mug says "professional bookworm" which sums me up really! As commissioning fiction editor on the magazine, I love sharing my reading experience of the latest books, debut authors and more with you all, and would like to hear from you about your favourite books and authors! Email me