What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is a term that we hear a lot in the Wellness world; mindful eating, mindfulness at work, etc. Mindfulness is the active practice of being aware in the present moment. It is being aware of, and observing, the experiences we are having without judgement. Studies have shown that mindfulness as a practice can help to relieve stress, anxiety, depression, and even pain.
Mindfulness can be done as part of your mediation practice. Take time to sit in a quiet space, bring your awareness to your breath, and be present. Shift your awareness from any thoughts that come up to the space around you, paying attention instead to sensations, such as the temperature, any scents, or the way your breath moves through your body.
Tips to be More Mindful
Here are a few ways you can do to be more mindful throughout your day:
- Focus on mindful eating – not only is this a great stress reliever but it is an amazing tool to prevent overeating. Sit down and eat your meals without any distractions. Turn off the tv, set down your phone, and focus on the meal before you. Chew your food slowly, savoring each bite, experiencing the texture and taste fully.
- Get outside – walking in nature without distractions can be completely stress relieving. Walk without looking at your phone or listening to music. Appreciate the environment around you, especially as it changes from season to season and sometimes day to day. Become aware of the sights and sounds as you walk. Take notice of the trees, flowers blooming, sounds of birds and other animals. Even be aware of how the ground feels underneath your feet and how your steps land.
- Journal – journaling is a great way to take your thoughts out of your head and put them on paper. You can take time to reflect, write out your thoughts, and even gain new perspective on things going on in your life. Another benefit to journaling is using it as a tool to cultivate an attitude of gratitude by writing out the things you are grateful for each day.
- Mindful movement – take at least 30 minutes each day to move your body in a mindful way. Think of it as moving mediation. Dance like no one is watching, practice yoga, or enjoy a mindful walk outside.