Mindfulness is an easy skill to practice to help you be more in tune with your surroundings, feelings and bodily sensations. It allows you to pay attention more in a fast paced world that would otherwise zoom by us like a freight train. It is a self-care technique that will assist to alleviate some of the stressors of our everyday life. Below are the best times to be mindful throughout the day.
- During your morning routine. How we begin our day usually sets the tone to how our entire day will be. So if you have a chaotic morning routine, the chaos will only follow you throughout the day. The best time to start being mindful is in the morning because it is the start of a fresh, new day; a new beginning. Allow yourself approximately 10-20 minutes to wake up and be present in the moment. Sip on your tea while you focus on how your comfy socks feel on your feet. Stand outside and watch the sunrise while you feel the warmth of it approach your face. Listen to the birds with your eyes closed. Whatever you chose to do to keep you mindful, present without all the noise in your head will improve your mornings and lead to a better day.
- During Lunch. This one is huge! How many of us hussle and bussle during our lunch break? As a working human, we often cram in a lunch without even thinking twice about it. When we do this, often times we make unhealthy choices and that Wendy’s four for four is gone in five minutes or less. Yes, it happens. So attempt to give yourself the fair time you deserve to take a time out to nourish your body. Meal planning is a great way to avoid making unhealthy choices and it gives you a sense of calm. While at lunch, sit down and focus on your meal, look at it, smell it and when you take that first bite, focus on how it tastes as you chew it slowly. Continue until you have finished your meal.
- On our drive home from work. How many of us can really say that we remember our drive home? More often than not, when I get home, I have no idea how I did. Did I see that new barn built on the left hand side? No. Did I take notice of the make of the car in front of me? Nope! I would be a terrible eye witness! Well it is because we zone out! We are thinking about the day, about what we are going to make for dinner, thinking about our kid’s homework assignment or did I wash his uniform for karate tonight? You name it; we think it, we are non-stop thinking machines. So the next time you drive home, pay attention. Crack your car window; allow that breeze to blow through your hair (if you have any). Be in the moment, feel the way you are gripping the steering wheel and as you take notice feel the tension in your body shift to a relaxed state. Yes, we are tense, we are going home after working all day, and we need to take notice of how our bodies react. Now, what make was the car in front of you on your way home today?
- At Bedtime. Praise be to parents who have a child or children who just love to protest bedtime. We. Want. To. Scream. At this time of our day, we are beyond exhausted and we want our little humans to have their bedtime snack, brush their tiny little teeth and go right to bed like an off switch. NOOOOO. This does not happen! Unfortunately. So what can we do to keep ourselves in check during this time of “just go to sleep already?” Pause. You heard me! Stop what you are doing mid-sentence and pause. “Would you just get back in…” Look at that face, memorize their features and take a breath. See. You’re calm and refocused which allows your child to be as well. They will close their sleepy eyes and you will then have a couple hours to yourself. Ensure that you are mindful during your bedtime routine. Skip to this point, if you do not have a child or children to get to bed. Take a bath, read a blog post, do some aromatherapy and when you crawl into bed, feel the sheets on your legs and feet and focus on your breathing while you let the racing thoughts of what tomorrow will bring pass peacefully in and out. You will have a more relaxing transition to dreamland.
My blog is not to replace professional information and should not be considered as such. This blog reflects my opinion apart from any organization affiliation. This information is true and accurate to my knowledge and may be subject to mistakes, omissions and errors. This blog should not be seen as advice to replace medical, legal or emotional guidance from a professional, if you chose to do so, it is at your own risk. I reserve the right to amend this blog at any time and may change the focus of this blog at any time.