But, if you choose to start practicing mindfulness, you can experience a variety of benefits. Some of these include lower stress and improved concentration.
So, how can you be more mindful? Let’s take a look at four practical ways to introduce mindfulness into your life.
1. Make It a Part of Your Routine
One of the easiest ways to be more mindful is to apply it to your daily activities.
Everyone has some type of routine to which they gravitate every day. Being mindful doesn’t have to be a monumental event.
You can be more mindful when you’re doing as something as simple as brushing your teeth for example.
Pay attention to the sights, sounds, smells, and the way it feels to be in that present moment. It’s a great way to kick off your day and get in the mindset of focusing on the present.
2. Be Mindful Several Times a Day
Again, you don’t have to practice mindfulness for hours at a time. In fact, some research has suggested that shorter bursts of mindfulness several times a day can actually be more beneficial.
So, choose to focus on one thing at a time for a few minutes. You might think about how the patterns of the steam from your coffee keep changing. Or, you might start to think about the way your clothes feel against your skin.
Keeping it simple and short will allow you to focus for a few minutes at a time. Plus, it will be easier to reset the way you think throughout the day.
3. Use Reminders
If you’re having trouble being more mindful each day, it’s okay to use reminders. Create cues for yourself that will help you to remember to stop and be mindful of the moment.
One easy approach to reminding yourself is to designate an object as your cue. Maybe it’s your bathroom mirror, or your car, etc. Whenever you see that object, use it as your cue to stop and focus on the present.
It can be fun to find different reminders that work for you. Get creative with how you cue up your mindfulness on a daily basis.
4. Practice Meditation
A beneficial practice to encourage more mindfulness is meditation. Yes, it is a practice. You won’t become a meditation expert overnight. In fact, you may even feel awkward or strange doing it for a while.
But, the more you practice meditation—focusing on how you feel and respond to your environment—the easier it will be to find moments of mindfulness throughout the day.
Meditation doesn’t have to be a series of chants or sounds. It can be as simple as sitting in a quiet place with your eyes closed as you focus on your breathing.
Don’t be intimidated by the stereotypes surrounding mindfulness. It isn’t as overwhelming as it might seem.
Though it takes time and practice to be more mindful, you can reach a point where it’s a natural part of your everyday life. Soon, you’ll start to see the many benefits that come with being a more mindful individual. Often times, we will use mindfulness-based interventions in counseling to help you get started with the healthy practice of being more mindful.