How to Practice Daily Mindfulness
Sometimes when life gets to be a little crazy we tend to start operating on autopilot. We answer emails, make phone calls, go to meetings, go shopping and we are never fully present in those moments. If you are the person making your grocery list in your head while someone is talking to you, it’s time to switch gears and start practicing mindfulness. Check out the different ways you can incorporate mindful living into your everyday life.
When we first wake up in the morning we are flooded with stress hormones. Are you ever anxious when you first wake-up? This is because your cortisol levels start to spike when you think of the day ahead of you. Next time instead of jumping into your to-do list, just stay in bed for a few minutes and notice your breath. If you start to get flooded with thoughts, let them go and start again. This will help set you up for a mindful day!
Water Cooler Mindfulness:
Work can be one of the hardest places to be mindful. I suggest taking 10 minutes at your desk before you dive into any work to help you stay focused throughout the day. Close your eyes, relax, and sit upright. Focus on your breath: inhale; exhale; inhale; exhale. To stay in the moment, count silently every time you exhale. Place your attention on your breath and allow yourself to enjoy these 10 minutes, you are present and peaceful, even if only for a few minutes each day.
Utilize focus and awareness throughout your day to stay on task and to prioritize. We can get so caught up in the simple dopamine releasing tasks that we don’t focus on the larger items that need to be completed. Avoid doing simple mind-numbing tasks (emails) when you first get to the office to keep your brain aware of larger goals.
When you get into your car and start your commute come from work, turn off your phone, shut off the radio and sit in the silence and be there. Let go of your thoughts that arise and attend to your breath. This will help you let go of the stress from the day so you can be fully present and attentive when you get home.
I hope some of these tips are beneficial as you start on the path to mindful living! Try them out for a couple weeks and you’ll start to notice changes in how you interact with yourself and others!