Mindfulness in our Daily Life

Mindfulness in our Daily Life

What exactly is mindfulness and what are the best ways to incorporate it into our daily lives?
How it can benefit our health, productivity and general wellbeing?

Mindfulness relates to being present within the moment calmly and peacefully, without judgement or worry from the past or the future.

How many times have we all arrived at destinations and have no recollection or idea of how we got there?  Were we thinking about a past situation or are we thinking about a future event? How many times does this thinking happen in a day? This can often be apparent or inadvertent. Are our minds constantly occupied with the past or contemplating the future? Are we ever really in the present and if we are, how long are we actually in the present moment?

Mindfulness is something that we can all develop in our daily lives.  It has been practised for thousands of years and over the past forty years it has been more widely noticed in western societies.

We can increase our own personal mindfulness in everyday life through activities like walking, driving or something as basic as drinking a cup of coffee.

There are many health benefits resulting from the practise of mindfulness.
They are:

help manage relieve stress, anxiety and depression improve heart rate
help improve sleep improve memory
help to solve problems more easily improve immunity
help to be more emotionally stable make us happier

Here are a few examples of when to practise mindfulness.

Be Mindful While We Wait

Many of us will regularly find ourselves in situations where we have to wait, whether it’s waiting in traffic, waiting for the train or simply waiting in a queue. A typical response in these situations is to look for an immediate distraction from the boredom or frustration of waiting. Instead of automatically reaching for your smart phone, focus on your feelings and reactions toward waiting. If you feel impatient, annoyed or angry, question why this is and work to diffuse these negative thoughts with relaxation techniques such as inhaling and exhaling. Pay attention to your surroundings and become completely present in the moment.

Be Mindful While We Eat

Do we often find ourselves finishing a meal and feeling too full? Or are we too busy with external distractions like the TV, replying to emails or conversing over the phone to fully enjoy our meal? Practising mindful eating can help prevent overeating, improve digestion and allow us to better appreciate our food and where it comes from. To incorporate mindfulness into our eating habits, remove all external distractions and instead focus on the look, smell, taste and texture of our food. By becoming aware of each mouthful, we will develop a healthier relationship with food and learn to savour each meal.

Be Mindful Throughout our Work Day

The easiest way to become more mindful at work is to often take time out to unplug.  At your desk or in a quiet space, take three minutes to stop what you’re doing, inhale and exhale deeply and focus your attention fully on the breathing and then the body as a whole.  By practising this two or three times a day, it will help reduce stress, relax the space inside of you, clarify thoughts, maintain focus and be more productive.

 

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