We tend to get so caught up in the hustle and bustle of every day life that we forget to take a second and be present in the moment. This presence in the moment is known as Mindfulness.
"Mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way; On purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally."
-John Karat Zinn
What is mindfulness?
Mindfulness is a state of awareness and a practice. It is a way of focusing our attention on the present moment to take more notice of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and the world around us. Basically, it is taking the time to be mindful of all that is happening in the present moment.
It is all about
being in the moment,
Why practice mindfulness?
There are numerous health benefits to practicing mindfulness, where it can create improvements in our emotional, mental and physical health.
It can increase awareness of our thoughts, emotions and unhealthy patterns which can lead to a decrease in stress.
It helps individuals become more present in every moment, which can increase overall happiness.
It allows us to check in with our mind, body and spirit and to be honest with ourselves on how we are feeling in the present moment.
It can create healthier responses to difficult social situations.
How to implement mindfulness into every day life
Mindfulness can be practiced in every day life in the most simplest yet challenging ways. Taking the time to take in everything in the present moment, whether it be while spending time with family, going for a walk or exercising. Pay attention to what is around you and how you feel in the present moment.
Mind full or Mindful?
Ever since seeing this picture, it has really stuck with me. We tend to focus on the stressors of every day life without taking in anything around us and this picture really demonstrates it. We need to asks ourselves the question are we being mindful or mind full?
Exercises to practice mindfulness
5 Senses Exercise
This exercise is all about stimulating our senses and becoming grounded within ourselves. Grounding exercises are a great way to reduce stress and anxiety by reminding our minds of where we are in the present moment.
Take a few minutes and tell yourself:
5 things you can see
4 things you can feel
3 things you can hear
2 things you can smell (if there are no smells, your favourite scents)
1 thing you can taste (if you can not taste anything, your favourite thing to taste)
This exercise is a great way to check in with yourself physically to assess how each one of your body parts is feeling in the present moment. It is a form of meditation that is not only great for physical needs, but a great way to relax.
How it's done:
Sit or lie down in a comfortable position. Close your eyes and go through every part of your body and ask yourself how does it feel. Take a deep breath and send that breath into the body part you are focusing on.
If you would like it to be guided, try out a YouTube guided body scan meditation.