Mindfulness: how do I practice it?
Practicing mindfulness can take practice, but it’s a skill that’s important for your mental health. Mindfulness encompasses being aware and present. It’s a form of mediation where you can dedicate as much or as little time to feel the benefits. It’s a tool that can be used everywhere because all you need to do is think (in a specific way)!
Why do I need to practice this when I’m already thinking all day? Yes, our brains are constantly firing away trying to make decisions on what to have for lunch or how many rolls of toilet paper you need for lockdown. Mindfulness involves a deeper, more focused way of thinking and it has many benefits.
The benefits of Mindfulness:
Learning strategies that are good for your mental health are a must! Here’s how slowing down and taking some time to filter and channel your thoughts in a more positive way can benefit you:
Trains your brain to focus more on specific tasks, reduces procrastination and allows you to be more productive
Positive self image
How many times a day do you take a moment to appreciate yourself and your achievements in life? Scheduling in time to give yourself a pat on the back will improve your positive self talk and mood.
Reduces stress levels
Breathing, slowing down a racing mind, and being mindful reduces stress as it gives you time to organise, prioritise, and processes events and moments. Statistics show that 75% of people say that they experience stress weekly. In our blog post about stress and stress management we mentioned that we can become stressed from too much happening at once. Mindfulness can help you manage stress.
How to practice mindfulness:
The beauty of practicing this form of meditation is that there is no recipe or strict protocol to follow. It can take anywhere from 5- 45minutes out of your day if you choose…all it requires is the mental dedication of scheduling it in.
The basic guidelines for entering a meditative state is to become self aware. The following examples are points where you can start tune into your mind and body:
- Pay attention to your breathing
- Observe your environment, slow down, and take a minute to listen and see the events occurring around you.
- Live in the present: if you notice yourself dwelling on the past be affirmative that you accept what has been and transition your mind to the present
- Positive affirmations: list 3 things that you are grateful about yourself and your life
The above points are just a few ideas on how to be more present mindful in your daily routine. Meditation is open to interpretation and is adaptable to everyones life in some way. In these uncertain times, your mind needs you most!