Have you ever heard of the question, “What are your plans for the year? Or, where do you see yourself in the next five years?” Questions like these are harmful, and really don’t serve a purpose (nor can they ever be answered correctly). How can you know what you’ll want in five years, when you’re not sure what you want to eat for dinner tonight? Life is not meant to be an already written out novel. Your soul is on a journey, and as is true in all journeys, you don’t know what lies ahead. Learning how to be more mindful during each hectic day will keep this idea in focus.
Does knowing this make you anxious? Do you really prefer to live your life in the future? Here’s another question-do you find yourself forgetting things? Do you have the same conversation often (more than once is too often) and then realize you already said that? This happens when you’re not conscious of the here and now. You’re talking now, but you’re thinking about the future (or the past) and so you’re not here. Now.
Living your life in the future, or in the past, means you’re not engaged with today. Stuff’s happening right now! Paying attention to it means you won’t miss out, and in that lies mindfulness. We get it, you’re busy-life is very busy! All that means is that you need to be more vigilant in being mindful. So, how do you do this? Here are a few beginning steps:
- Start off on the right side of your mind:
Most days, you probably wake up with the list of to-do’s rolling out of your head like a stack of dominoes. This kind of task-wash releases cortisol into your blood, and you’ve already given your body the gift of stress hormones. Let go of this morning ritual and instead spend two minutes laying there, simply noticing your breath. Day thoughts will pop into your mind, but let them go, and focus on your breath.
- Pause before you start work:
Work is no different than your first waking moments. Lists and emails, needs and wants start hurling themselves at you at a lightning speed. Don’t succumb to this just yet. Close your eyes, relax and sit upright. Place your focus on your breath and pay attention to each inhale and exhale. You can take this time to repeat a mantra in your head, be thankful for each thing or event, one by one. When your ten minutes are up, you can focus on the day ahead. Everyone and everything else may eat up your energy, but for those ten minutes, you belonged to you.
Also, note that mindfulness will help increase your effectiveness as well, seeing as focus and awareness are at the core of efficiency.
- Take a breather:
As the day wears on, so does your body and mind. You’re starting to wander, and wonder if food can help alleviate the stress you’re experiencing. Before you head into the 7th meeting of the day, take two minutes to catch up with yourself. Focus on your breathing, and nothing else. Start going down the list of your senses. What do you specifically hear? What do you taste? What do you feel? So on and so forth.
- End of the day wrap up:
On your way home, take a few minutes to turn everything of and enjoy the silence. Let go of any negative thoughts (or any thoughts for that matter) and just be. When you get home, you can be fully present with your family.
Sometimes the body needs just as much of a cleanse as your mind does. Give us a call or book your next massage online. You owe it to your mind, your body, and to your soul.