Mindfulness is the practice of focusing all your attention in the present moment. You are aware of what you are listening, thinking, seeing, feeling, tasting and smelling. You are completely aware of what is going on and yet you do not make any judgments about your thoughts or experiences.
Simple mindfulness exercises can help you lead a better, calmer and stress-free life and you will also notice improvements in your concentration, memory and decision-making abilities. Let's take a look at a few mindfulness exercises that you can easily incorporate during your daily activities.
Eating is a wonderful activity to practice mindfulness. In fact, mindful eating has actually been used successfully by many people for weight loss. Hard to believe, but it is indeed true. This involves focusing your complete attention on the food. Experience the colors, the smell and the texture of the food. Focus on how it tastes as you place a bite of your meal in your mouth. Eat slowly and focus your full attention on chewing the food.
Whether you take 30 minutes out of your busy schedule to take a walk in the park or you just practice mindfulness while walking down to your office, it is totally up to you. The idea is to just focus on each and every step that you take. You are totally in the here and now and completely focused on how the ground feels under your feet.
A shower is the best place to practice being in the present. Just feel the water running down your body. Focus on how it feels to massage your hair with the shampoo. Take in the aroma of your shampoo and soap. Scrub your body with an oatmeal scrub or simply use a loofah. Don't rush. Instead just enjoy these few minutes to take a good shower.
Another very easy to incorporate technique is while brushing your teeth. Just do this activity with a little focus and you will notice how different and how much calmer it can make you feel. Brush slowly and experience the taste of the toothpaste and the feel of the brush on your teeth and gums. Spend about two minutes brushing and follow it up with cleaning the tongue and flossing. End the activity by gently massaging your gums with your fingers. This whole activity takes only 5 minutes but it can get you started off to a wonderful and stress-free day.
Brushing and combing your hair is another activity that can really help release stress. Just run the comb in your hair slowly and focus on how it feels on your scalp. Work through the tangles slowly and focus on how your hair feels as you run your fingers through it. If you have time, you can also give a gentle massage to your scalp. Massaging your scalp slowly with your fingers can further get you into a good mood and relax you completely.
You don't need to take out any extra time from your busy schedule for these activities. These simple mindfulness exercises are just a different way to do your daily activities in a slower and more focused way and that's all. Remember, being mindful refers to being in the present moment as much as possible without making any judgments. Practice this approach and you are likely to have a great day as well as a stress-free life!