Updated: Mar 9, 2021
Mindfulness is a concept that is often tossed around when discussing wellness. If you're like me, you may not fully understand everything that goes into mindfulness, or how to add it into your life. Mindfulness is defined by “a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment”. This means having a focus on being aware of where we are and what we’re doing without being overly reactive about external forces. Mindfulness is something we all possess, but it can become more available to use when we incorporate it into our daily routine.
Here are some basics of mindfulness practice that you can add to your daily routine. 1. Set aside some time and space. 2. Observe the present moment. 3. Let judgements roll by. 4. Return to observing the present moment as it is. 5. Be kind to a wandering mind.
Completing these simple practice exercises may not be easy, but repetition will allow you to improve your mindfulness. There are also more structured mindfulness exercises. These include:
1. Body scan meditation: Lie on your back with legs extended and arms at your sides with palms facing up. Focus your attention slowly and deliberately on each part of your body, either starting from your head and going to your toes or toes to head. Remain aware of any sensations, emotions or thoughts that come to mind while focusing on each part of your body. 2. Sitting meditation: Sit with your back straight with your legs crossed on the floor and hands in your lap. Breathe through the nose and focus on moving your breath in and out. If distractions occur, make note and return your focus back to your breath. 3. Walking meditation: Find a place about 10 to 20 feet in length and start to walk slowly. Focus on the sensation of walking, being aware of the feeling of standing and the movements that help you keep balance. When you reach the end of your path turn and repeat.
If you aim to practice mindfulness everyday for six months, this practice can become effortless.
This practice will allow you to reconnect and nurture yourself and has been seen to reduce stress, anxiety, pain, depression, and insomnia.
PCC Wellness Intern