Mindfulness isn’t just a buzzword people are throwing around these days. It’s a real and life-changing practice people are using all over the world. The whole idea behind it is to unplug from the stresses of daily life and to remember to enjoy life.
The first step in how to be more mindful through the day is to “un-hectic” your mind. You cannot control how quickly or slowly life goes, but you can decide how you react. Rather than let stress bend you out of shape, take a moment to fully stop and inhale deeply. Not reacting instantly or emotionally can be a challenge at first, but it’s deeply empowering. Through the practice of slowing down, life’s many little problems stop affecting you so painfully.
A good way to engage with slowing down is to be more aware of your surroundings. Using your senses is a great way to be more mindful throughout the day. Listen carefully to the ambient sounds; have you ever even really heard them all before? Set up an aromatherapy diffuser in different rooms, and take a moment to breathe in the scents as you move around. Reach out to the things around you, especially things you haven’t looked at or touched in a long time. Describe them in detail in your mind rather than letting your thoughts drift. When lunch rolls around, eat extra slowly and really experience the flavors. Try one or two of these techniques to better involve yourself in the process of just being.
Using Visual Cues
Once you get a grip on seeing things as they are, you can start goal-setting more effectively. Visual cues can also deter disruptive thoughts. For instance, you can place sticky notes or decorations with positive phrases around high-traffic areas. Another simple trick is to wear things that are coded with reminders. Colors themselves often have associations with emotions—such as yellow and happiness. Stones and gems commonly found in jewelry also have historical meanings and associations with goals and moods. Decide on daily goals, and accessorize to reinforce focus throughout the day.
It might seem like a tall order at first, but mindfulness can be a very gradual process. The goal is to give yourself a chance to have a healthier way of being. Sometimes just knowing there’s always an option to stop and breathe can help you remember to slow down. Practice mindfulness every day in whatever way is right for you, and take better control of yourself and your life.