Practice Mindfulness in Your Everyday
Do you find yourself trying to do several tasks at once, while thinking about another several you’ll do that afternoon? It might be time to develop an in-the-moment practice called mindfulness. Mindfulness requires focusing your concentration on whatever you are doing at the time – whether it be speaking, eating, writing, cooking or simply brushing your teeth. The benefits are vast – including clarity of mind, a boost in creativity, greater awareness and aiding sleep.
Here’s how to develop your own practice for a more mindful 2017.
practice when you wake up
To set the tone for the day ahead, sit with yourself for 10 minutes after the alarm goes off. No TV, radio or social media until you’ve spent time being present and concentrating on how you feel and your waking thoughts. To start, tune into your breathing by counting in to four and out to eight. This method is both calming and refreshing.
Be fully present when you’re in conversation with someone. Whether it’s a meeting with colleagues, a phone call with your mum, or catching up over coffee with a friend, the more engaged you are the more alert you’ll be for the day ahead. The other person will feel valued and you’ll actually retain the conversation and be able to use the information moving forward.
put your phone away
Mindful people know when not to check their phones. So if you have a task to achieve, a dinner to attend or a book to dive into, switch your phone to silent for an allocated time and turn these activities into meaningful memories.
keep it short
The mind responds better to short bursts of concentration rather than forced long bouts. Try concentrating on your surroundings when you’re eating lunch in the park. Or how the water feels on your skin while enjoying a summer swim. Once you’ve mastered mindfulness during your time out, you can bet you’ll be more successful at turning daily tasks into mindful moments, too.
learn to uni-task
Ditch multi-tasking - the enemy of focus – and replace it with uni-tasking. Even if you’ve written ‘multi-tasker’ on your CV, once you grasp the act of focussing on one task continually, before taking a break to move onto the next task, you’ll realise how much more productive you’re being.
Mindfulness and creative pursuits are perfectly suited to each other because being present boosts creativity and originality. The adult colouring book trend is an ideal way to nurture your imagination. Other ways to access your inner artist include singing, baking, writing or painting.
tools to harness mindfulness
Main image: Kikki.K
Live Your Best Life in 2017