Mindfulness involves being in the present moment, with intention and without judgment. Mindfulness allows us to experience moments more fully.
Mindfulness is stopping to smell the roses and noticing the different scents, noticing the feeling of the breeze on your skin or savouring the taste of a piece of chocolate.
Mindfulness trains our brain to anchor our attention to the present. This is helpful because we’re often taken out of the present moment by worries about something that may happen in the future or something that’s happened in the past. Over time, a mindfulness practice can help us better disengage from unhelpful thoughts and emotions by helping us focus on the here and now. Mindfulness practices are also linked to feeling happier and more calm, and a better night’s sleep!
Here are some ways to practice mindfulness in your day:
- Meditation involves practicing focused attention. Our mind will naturally wander, so when that happens simply redirect your attention back to the present moment. Rather than judging yourself when this happens, simply notice where your mind has drifted. With regular practice, you will become better at noticing when your mind wanders and will be quicker at bringing it back to the present moment.
Watch the sunset
- Take note of the colours in the sky as they change during sunset.
The 5-step grounding technique:
- What are 5 things you can see?
- What are 4 things you can feel?
- What are 3 things you can hear?
- What are 2 things you can smell?
- What is 1 thing you can taste?
- The next time you're in nature, use your five senses and fully soak in the experience. Watch the sunset, listen to the sounds of the birds, notice what’s in your surroundings, and feel the breeze and the sunshine on your skin.
Savour the experience
- There are so many wonderful moments, big or small, in our day that we may take for granted. It may be drinking our morning coffee or eating a delicious meal. Why not savour the experience? Take a moment and notice how your cup of coffee or drink of choice smells and tastes.
Progressive muscle relaxation (PMR)
- PMR involves holding tension and releasing tension to promote muscle relaxation.