Four Tips to be More Mindful in Your Daily Life
The great thing about mindfulness is that it’s more than just meditation. You can practice mindfulness any time. You can do mindful walking, mindful eating and even mindful speaking and listening. And all these activities train your brain to be even more mindful in the future.
Walk mindfully. The next time you go for a walk, bring some mindful awareness to the process. You can do this by noticing the sensation of your feet as you touch the ground, or the breeze against your skin. Each time your mind wanders off to other thoughts about the past or future, bring your attention back to the experience of actually walking.
Be mindful with your child. When you’re reading a story to your child, keep your attention there. While bathing your child, be in the moment. When your child asks a question, connect to them with your full attention. Allowing your attention to be in the present moment with your child may even make your child more mindful because children automatically copy what they see, and you’ll value your precious time together more.
Exercise mindfully. Before engaging in a physical activity like swimming, running, cycling or even cleaning, take a few conscious breaths. Really feel your breath entering and leaving your lungs. Then, when you do your physical exercise, notice how your body feels. Connect your attention with the experience. Each time your mind wanders to other thoughts, kindly bring your attention back. Finish the activity with a few more mindful breaths and notice how you feel before moving onto your next task.
Communicate mindfully. When you’re speaking to your partner, friend or colleague, try mindful communication. This means that you listen to what the other person is saying with full attention. You notice your thoughts and perhaps your desire to interrupt, but then let that go.
When listening, don’t just be aware of the content of the other person’s words, but also the tone of voice and emotion behind the words. This is deep listening. When speaking, be authentic rather than trying to impress. Listen to the tone of your voice as you speak, and try not to rush your words.