I feel like mindfulness is a word that gets thrown around a lot lately, especially as we now live in a time where self care has become a priority and more socially acceptable way of life. But what is mindfulness you might be asking. Well to put it simple mindfulness refers to the state of being in which one is consciously focused on what is happening at exactly that moment, or being fully present in the moment. Now if you are new to mindfulness it can seem kind of daunting to think about all of a sudden turning our brain off and focusing on only one thing, or only what is directly in front of us. I mean we are running a thousand miles a minute, and have so many things being thrown at us, how could we slow down and focus on one thing. Believe me I know it can be hard, it was for me when I first started so I wanted to share with you five simple ways to implement mindfulness into your life without being completely overwhelmed.
Spending time in nature is one of my favorite ways to start and implement mindfulness in your life. So here’s what I want you to do, take a few minutes and go sit outside. Find someplace relatively quiet and focus on it. Focus on what you see, smell, taste, hear, feel, truly revel in everything around you. Taking some time to fully immerse yourself in what is going on around you will help to ground you and refocus you.
Another great way to practice mindfulness is to exercise. Now don’t worry I am not going to be the person to tell you that you need to start running marathons to be mindful, but something as small as taking a walk around your neighborhood can be just as beneficial. Give yourself the time to acknowledge the sounds you hear, what you see, and how it makes you feel; being fully present in the moment.
Probably the hardest for those new to mindfulness (only because it can feel so foreign when you start), but perhaps the most rewarding too is to practice meditation and visualization. Giving yourself a few minutes in a quiet space to reflect on your thoughts and feelings and to think about your goals is a perfect example of a mindful practice. It doesn’t have to be anything extreme either, five minutes here and there to just check in with yourself and to remind yourself to be present in the moment is enough.
Now by far my favorite way to practice and implement mindfulness into my life is through listening to music. Music is so universally touching to the soul that what better way to practice being mindful than to listen to your favorite song and get completely lost in it; noticing ever beat, tone, and instrument.
My last way to implement mindfulness into your life may seem a little strange, but just trust me, and that is to practice mindful eating. Mindful eating is just eating in a way in which you actually focus on and relish in what you are consuming. For instance instead of sitting in front of the television and woofing down your food, you actually take time to eat slowly and savor each bite.
One of the most important things we can do for our own mental health is to practice mindfulness or being fully present in the moment. Giving ourselves a few moments to truly be present and take everything in allow us to slow down, remember what’s important, and take a break in life to notice the small things. So, now that you have had an beginner’s introduction to mindfulness and five simple ways to incorporate it into your life, go out and practice it; implement it, and watch as your life and mindset shift.