With the fast-paced nature of our society today, it can be incredibly difficult for us to take a moment and give more conscious thought into what is going on around us. We get consumed in our own ambition and ache for self-gratification that it can sometimes blur out our good qualities and ultimately tarnish the path to our greatest desires. A great way to achieve a goal or keep the good things life going is to practice mindfulness. Being mindful simply means having a greater awareness of what’s going on around you. Practicing mindfulness achieves greater humility and empathy, and gives you perspective as you work towards achieving and maintaining the positive actions in your life. Here are some simple ways to practice mindfulness.
This is the most common exercise when it comes to mindfulness. Meditation has numerous benefits. It’s known to lower blood pressure, increase focus, and improve your mood. Meditation is a great method of preparation to face the day ahead of you, or it can reduce stress when you’re overwhelmed in the middle of a busy day. Meditating for a mere 15 minutes will help you overcome that nagging feeling of stress. It slows down the pace of a busy agenda, allowing you to take one thing at a time.
2. Go for a walk
Going for a walk could be considered meditation in motion. It’s another great way to reduce stress. If your productivity is lacking, remove yourself from the area that’s stressing you out and go for a brief walk. It’s another great way to refresh your mind if you’re not into sitting still. If there’s a song that elicits positive emotions, play it as you go along. Also, your walking route doesn’t have to be scenic, it just has to take you away from what’s stressing you out. Walking is great because it keeps your brain active and can give you a much needed wake-up call. No need to chug a Red Bull or an eighth cup of coffee.
3. Eat your meals slowly
It sounds crazy, but being mindful involves connecting with your five senses, and finding enjoyment in the most tangible things. Everyone loves a good plate of food. If you’re feeling hungry and about to dive into to a delicious burrito, your natural impulse is to inhale it all the way to a food coma. The next time around, slow it down. Take the time to properly enjoy your meal and see if there’s a difference. You may find that it feels like you’re tasting your favorite dish all over again.
4. Reduce consumption of technology
The greatest double-edged sword of the 21st century are the advances that have been made in technology. Everyone is fully aware of how wrapped up we are in our phones and tablets, yet we still continue to overuse them. One way to stay mindful is to be appreciative of the world around you. Spending hours on end glaring at screens hinders our ability to enjoy more productive things. Instead of going through your social feeds in the morning, take that walk or meditate before the day starts. Also consider limiting your recreational phone allocate that time practicing a healthier habit.
5. Think positively
We’re so often focused on what we don’t have and we overwork ourselves for a better perceived lifestyle. It’s always good to try improve upon things in your life, but it’s not healthy to constantly focus on your shortcomings. Be sure to remind yourself of your good qualities and take things one step at a time. When you do happen to be working on improving yourself in one way or another, you need to pat yourself on the back for giving a genuine effort, even if you’re not moving along as quickly as expected.
Try one or more of these tips this week and see if it makes a difference for you. If you’re looking for a rule of thumb of practicing mindfulness, it would be to slow things down and appreciate the path you’re on, don’t get wrapped up in the destination. Appreciate your progress, learn from mistakes, don’t lose sight on what’s important, and never give up.