In our busy lives we rush around in automatic pilot not really noticing the things we are doing, the habits we have acquired, how our emotions may be affecting the way we behave at work, at home and towards other people. Mindfulness is about noticing the present in a non judgemental way. Practised on a daily basis regular mindfulness training can help reduce a busy over thinking mind, help reduce stress, anxiety, pain and depression. It helps makes us more consciously aware of how we think, what thoughts trigger the way we eat, drink and move and how we react to people and situations at work and at home. Whilst we cannot change the environment, the people around us and the barriers we may face on a daily basis, we change the way we view them through our own eyes and if we choose to we can change the way we respond so that we feel less stressed, less anxious and more in control.
So how do we become more mindful?
Take a moment to pause either in your chair at home or work, sat on a bench outside or in the car or the train. Take a moment to close your eyes, gaze down, focus on a point in a room or out of the window which ever you feel is most natural and comfortable for you. When you feel ready begin to notice how you are breathing. Breathing happens automatically you never have to consciously think about it. When you start to pay attention to your breathing this is the first step to becoming present and opening the door to becoming mindful.
As you notice your breathing try to notice how you breathe, the sensation as you breathe, whether you breathe in through your nose or mouth. Take 2 minutes just to listen to the sound of your own breath. Notice how your mind wanders this is quite normal, accept that our minds are used to being busy and bring your attention back to your breath. Try not to judge why or where your mind wanders to, just accept it will and notice any thoughts that come to mind and then return back to noticing your breathing.
Commit to taking 1-2 minutes morning, afternoon and evening (5 minutes a day) over the next week to pause and notice your breathe as we start our mindfulness journey together.
As we open the door to becoming present on daily basis we may start to notice all the little things we may have missed when we were busy over thinking, feeling stressed and anxious. Over time we find we notice more things that make us smile, that we feel thankful and grateful for all of which helps boost our positive emotions.
Being present means we –
React less, feel calmer, less anxious, less stressed, more in control of our thoughts and emotions and more in control of what we are eating drinking and how we move. all of which may have a positive affect on our health and wellness everyday.