HOW TO LIVE MORE MINDFULLY
Most of us spend a lot of time rushed and distracted.
Our minds go to thoughts about the past or worries about the future and we miss living the moment we’re in. We believe we can only be happy once things are different.
Mindfulness can help you live a more conscious and fulfilling life — right now.
Try the following five tips to help you discover a greater sense of inner peace.
Bring your attention into this very moment. As you do this, try to be with things exactly as they are — without any judgement. Notice whatever you’re experiencing right now and don’t try to change a thing.
It helps to be aware of your breathing. Notice how your body moves as you breathe. Look for where you’re holding onto tension in your muscles and pay attention to your busy thoughts. Say to yourself, “I’m right here and I’m OK” and at the same time imagine you can just accept everything as it is for now.
Try a short meditation practise at the beginning of each day to help you learn to be more at ease with your thoughts. Sit quietly for five minutes with your eyes closed and pay close attention to your breathing. If you find it difficult to meditate silently on your own, download a guided meditation to get you started.
It’s important to know that meditation isn’t something that needs to be practised perfectly. You don’t need to empty your mind of all thoughts — it’s natural for your attention to wander away from the meditation. As best you can, just guide your focus back to your breath when you realise it has wandered.
When you do become aware of difficult thoughts, think about what you usually do to try to escape them. Many of us overeat, drink alcohol or shop to try to numb our pain.
Instead of defaulting to your usual habits, make a choice to be kind to yourself and do something that improves your wellbeing rather than diminishes it.
Go for a walk and look for the beauty in nature, run a bath and add a few drops of essential oil or cook something nourishing and savour the experience of eating (rather than rushing or feeling guilty about it).
Be mindful of your bigger-picture life plans. Identify your personal values and use these to help you make conscious choices about your long-term vision. Once you have a rough plan in mind, write down small action steps that move you in the direction of your dreams.
Make a mindful contribution to something bigger than you. This might involve doing something small for someone else or making a difference in society in a meaningful way.
As well as giving your life a greater sense of purpose, contributing to others has the added bonus of lowering your stress levels and boosting your mood.
We love hearing how our daily tips and advice assists you to make positive changes in your life, so please feel free to share your experiences below and ask any questions you may have!
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Thanks for reading
I’m an author, coach, mindfulness teacher and speaker. I started my business, Total Balance in 2002 and almost 16 years later, I wake up every day to a business and life that I love.