Mindfulness is paying attention without judgement. It’s a way of connecting with yourself and the world around you. As we understand ourselves by looking at our own thoughts and feelings, we handle life in a more resilient way. We are better able to be courageous, persistent, and understanding.
When things are hard, even when they seem impossible, we find that it’s our persistence that keeps us going. We encourage you to meditate on your own persistence.
Here are a few ways to exercise mindfulness this season:
- Pay attention.
It’s hard to slow down and notice things in a busy world. Try to take the time to experience your environment with all of your senses — touch, sound, sight, smell and taste. For example, when you eat a favorite food, take the time to smell, taste and truly enjoy it.
- Live in the moment.
Try to intentionally bring an open, accepting and discerning attention to everything you do. Find joy in simple pleasures.
- Accept yourself.
Treat yourself the way you would treat a good friend.
- Focus on your breathing.
When you have negative thoughts, try to sit down, take a deep breath and close your eyes. Focus on your breath as it moves in and out of your body. Sitting and breathing for even just a minute can help.
You can also try more structured mindfulness exercises, such as:
- Body scan meditation.
Lie on your back with your legs extended and arms at your sides, palms facing up. Focus your attention slowly and deliberately on each part of your body, in order, from toe to head or head to toe. Be aware of any sensations, emotions or thoughts associated with each part of your body.
- Sitting meditation.
Sit comfortably with your back straight, feet flat on the floor and hands in your lap. Breathing through your nose, focus on your breath moving in and out of your body. If physical sensations or thoughts interrupt your meditation, note the experience and then return your focus to your breath.
- Walking meditation.
Find a quiet place 10 to 20 feet in length, and begin to walk slowly. Focus on the experience of walking, being aware of the sensations of standing and the subtle movements that keep your balance. When you reach the end of your path, turn and continue walking, maintaining awareness of your sensations.
Mindfulness is a way of befriending ourselves and our experience -Jon Kabat-Zinn
From meditation to journaling, mindfulness may be explored in a variety of ways. Inviting music into the mix can further your mindful deep dive. We love these playlists.
Texture Papier Records – Mindfulness Meditation 2021: This playlist is a mix of soothing, hushed tones mixed with a variety of instruments that will bring your mind into complete peace. This is great for those who have understood the fundamentals of mindfulness and need background music to help them transition into that phase.
Mindfulness – Focus/Relax: The tone of this playlist is creative as it bring in many different elements, digging deep into the depths of your mind in order to find mindfulness. This playlist has a capacity for a full day of mindfulness, if you need a day to yourself to realign.
Mindfulness for Beginners – Let go of craving and free your awareness: This podcast is incredible for beginners trying to understand mindfulness. This spiritual journey helps with letting go of our attachments so that we can live unburdened and free. This podcast teaches persistence and patience. Incredible material for those who needing a starting point.