“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.” ~ Buddha
A new year, a new you? I read this great quote again recently and it reminded me that practicing mindfulness on a daily basis allows us to be calm and peaceful. This is one of my goals for this year.
Mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way; on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.
Have you ever been rushing and missed the exit, or caused an accident, or sent an e-mail to the wrong person, or forgotten a responsibility? If you have, you are not alone. We have become victims of the hurried, noisy, fast paced environment that we have all created and all contributed to. When we multi-task, we can only be partially effective in all the different things we are doing. When you are present and mindful doing a single thing – that is when you are at your best, your peak, your optimal ability.
Practicing mindfulness takes practice. Mindfulness is the antithesis of multi-tasking. Very simply – living in the present moment is about living in the now by being more aware and focused on what you are doing. The best way to bring mindfulness into your life effortlessly is to create a daily intention. As you go about your day, try to find as many opportunities as you can to practice mindfulness. The more you practice, the easier it will become to bring mindful awareness into your life experiences, which in the end may also help you cope with stress and personal issues.
Here are 5 simple ways to cultivate mindfulness in your day to day life:
SILENCE ~ Hidden in the word ‘listen’ is the word ‘silent’. For 1 minute choose to make a conscious effort to switch off the noise around you and allow the silence to fill your mind.
BATH BLISS ~ Set aside time to have a long, luxurious bath and be mindful of all your senses. Enjoy the warm water, bath oils and soap, scented candles, fluffy towels and relaxing music.
SLOW DOWN ~ Instead of rushing from one place to another, slow down and walk mindfully. Work slowly and deliberately on one task at a time. Keep your mind on the present, not the past or the future.
BREATHE ~ Take a moment to focus on your breathing for a full minute. It relaxes the space inside of you, straightens your spine and opens the chest. Deeply inhale into the bottom of your belly and then take much longer on your exhalation.
NATURE ~ Place water and food outside for the birds. Take a moment to watch them feed and wash and preen their feathers. Appreciate the beauty of everything in nature, even the little creatures.