Hi everyone. I’m AmethystAP, the author of loveinspirelearn.com I’m so excited to be a guest writer on Caroline’s blog and share with you, her community. Caroline’s desire to spread awareness on living a more environmentally friendly life and spread mental health awareness is inspirational. It’s a privilege to be able to share some mindfulness tips with you today.
What is Mindfulness?
According to Oxford Languages, mindfulness is “the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something. It is a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.”
How to Be Mindful?
You can bring mindfulness into any task by slowing down and paying attention to the present moment. This means that you allow yourself to immerse all of your senses into whatever you are doing at that moment. It is about being intentional with your actions and enjoying the simple pleasures of life. Mindfulness is also about accepting oneself for who you are in each moment.
When practising mindfulness, your breath can be an amazing anchor. Your breath is a reflection of your state of mind. When we are calm and relax our breathing is usually slow and deep. A great way to mimic that sense of peace is to intentionally deepen your breath. When you are performing any task, slow down your breath and focus on the moment.
7 Ways To Bring Mindfulness Into Your Day
Mindfulness doesn’t always have to be you sitting crossed-legged on the floor or chair preparing to meditate. You can actually bring that awareness into activities that you do anyway. This makes it much simpler to implement mindfulness practice into your daily life. Here are 7 ways you can bring mindfulness into your life.
Mindfulness while waking up
On waking up, bring your attention to the bed and your body against it. How does it feel? Stretch and lengthen your body, notice the sensations. Sit up and find a comfortable seat on the bed. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Observe your breath flowing in and out of your nose. Now ask yourself, “What is my intention for the day?” Visualise how you want your day to go. How do you want to show up today and how you will handle difficult situations if they arise.
After setting your intention, express some gratitude for the day and what you have in your life. Now wake up and look around at your room. Take a moment to appreciate your surroundings before beginning your day.
Being mindful while brushing your teeth
Everyone brushes their teeth, at least I hope so! This is a readily available opportunity for you to be mindful. Instead of standing there brushing your teeth and letting your mind wander, focus your attention on what you are doing. Feel the toothbrush in your hand as you pick it up. Is it cool to the touch, warm, smooth, rough? What colour is it? Do the same with the toothpaste. How does it feel as you squeeze the tube and place the paste on your toothbrush? What does the toothpaste smell like? What colour is the paste? How does it feel as you brush your teeth? Do you enjoy the scent of the toothpaste you are using? Listen to the sound of the toothbrush as it gently brushes your teeth. How does the tap feel as you turn it on? What about the water temperature?
Those are some of the things you can focus on while brushing your teeth. You didn’t have to change anything but bring your attention to the act of brushing your teeth. That is mindfulness in action. Did you enjoy that experience?
Mindfulness while showering
Pay attention as you undress. How do your clothes feel against your skin as you remove them? As you step into the shower, how does the ground feel? How does the tap feel as you turn on the shower? How does the water feel? Enjoy the sensation of the water and soap as you wash your body. How does the soap smell? Bring all your senses into the shower with you.
Mindfulness while eating
Before you begin your meal pause for a moment and breath. Allow your mind to let go of previous tasks and focus on this moment. Take a moment to ask yourself, how hungry am I? Listen to what your body is telling you. Now select your portions in accordance with how hungry you feel. As you begin your meal, remember to chew slowly and immerse yourself in the meal. How does it taste? What does it smell of? How does it feel in your mouth? Mindfully take note of what you enjoy about the meal.
Being mindful while commuting
Commuting can be a stressful experience for some, especially these days. We are a lot more self-conscious and anxious due to the pandemic. Instead of worrying about what is going on around you, mindfully observe your surroundings. Pay attention to what you are feeling. What emotions are arising as you commute? Take note of the different sounds, scents and sights without judging them. Acknowledge what you are experiencing. What thoughts are going through your mind? Take deep breaths to ground yourself at this moment.
Mindfulness while waiting
When waiting in line or to meet someone, we can become annoyed and frustrated. Instead of standing impatiently getting frustrated or bored looking for some kind of distraction, stop. Pause and breathe for a moment. Observe and acknowledge how you feel as you see the long line. What thoughts run through your head? As you stand in line relax your body and use your breath to stay in the moment. Stop worrying about how long the line is or how long your friend is taking to arrive. Get comfortable in your body, take this moment to tune into yourself and enjoy the world around you.
Mindfulness while doing chores
Another great way to bring mindfulness into your day is while doing chores. Chores are a part of our daily life. They can take up a huge portion of our day. So instead of mindlessly doing chores pay attention to what your hands are doing. Observe the sensations and textures as you handle various items. Be mindful of what you are thinking and feeling while you clean. Are you anxious to finish the task quickly? Are you thinking about the next task on your list? Acknowledge those feelings and then let them go. Be aware of what you are doing at this moment.
Thank you again Caroline for having me.
Previous guest posts:
Best wishes, Cx