Mindfulness. A big buzzword of the moment, often misconstrued as being something a lot more complicated than it is. To be mindful is simply to be present and in the moment. Put that way, surely there are heaps of ways to incorporate it into your everyday routine? Particularly as the benefits are huge; including stress reduction, higher brain functioning, lowered anxiety levels and increased focus and attention.
These are our top tips to easily introduce mindfulness into your everyday life:
1. WHEN YOU WAKE UP
Your alarm goes off, and you reach for your phone to turn it off. Then you probably spend the next 10 minutes checking any messages you missed from last night, or scrolling through Instagram. But really, this is the perfect time to be mindful.
Try leaving your phone to the side and taking some moments to yourself. How are you feeling? How did you sleep? Feel the comfort of bed, and the sounds you can hear from outside or somewhere else in the house. What is on your mind? What emotions are you experiencing?
Just noting all of these things is a great start to the day. And that’s it! It’s as easy as that!
2. IN THE SHOWER
Usually just another step in the morning routine, but why not treat it as an opportunity to be mindful? What does the water feel like? How does the soap feel against your skin? Be mindful of the smell of your shampoo, and the noise and heat of the shower.
3. ON YOUR COMMUTE
Your commute to work – usually associated with stress, anxiety or boredom, could be transformed into your favourite time of day. Whether in the car, on the bus or squished into a train, start noticing the people around you, the view from out of the window… You could also take some time to do some deep belly breaths – just doing those slow, deep, steady breaths and feeling those breaths rise and fall could sink your body into a relaxation response.
4. AT LUNCHTIME
What do you usually do on your lunchbreak? Maybe scoff down your lunch whilst scrolling through the internet, reading some articles or looking at social media? Why not sit outside, and take note of anything going on around you? The feel of the grass on your skin, the touch of a plant, the people walking past laughing, the taste of your lunch. Really appreciate it all. You’ll go back to the office rejuvenated and ready for a productive afternoon.
5. DURING MEALS
Food is one of the most glorious things in life (we think so, anyway!) so why would you waste a meal by being distracted by something else? It is meant to be much better for your digestion if you eat slowly, and mindfully, without distraction – why don’t you give it a go?
Just try it for a week – and let us know how you get on!