3 Ways To Start Making Mindfulness "Work For You"
August 17, 2017
“In today’s rush, we all think too much — seek too much — want too much — and forget about the joy of just being.” - Eckhart Tolle
Why Don’t I Get Mindfulness?
It’s not uncommon today to hear about mindfulness, meditation or some other form of stress reduction and say, “I just don’t get it!”.
In fact, it’s completely normal. The biggest challenge really is the switch in mindset from the anxious beta brainwave to the alpha wave of attention (the “Ahhh” relaxed feeling of lying on a beach chair)
Practice makes improvement.
1. Practice Daily Mindful Moments
There’s no need to jump right into sitting mindful meditation if you don’t feel comfortable yet. Start by planning and taking single “mindful snapshots” everyday to build your awareness skills.
Pick a place or time of day to commit to taking a snapshot.
This could be the moment before you enter the office. Right in the middle of lunch. Before you get home, or as soon as you wake up.
When you come across that place or time pause for a brief moment and take a deep breath.
In that moment, imagine that your eyes are like a photo lens attempting to focus in on one subject in your surroundings.
Take your time while focusing on breathing deeply into your stomach, to zero in on a single subject.
Once you’ve found a subject of attention (say a tree outside the office building), just explore it with your eyes slowly, and make a mental snapshot in your head of what you currently feel like, and the sensation of becoming aware of your surroundings.
Don’t be discouraged if you lose focus within the first 2-3 minutes, practice makes us better, and if you apply the technique everyday you’ll continue to improve.
2. Use an App
Technology has grown the greater awareness of mindfulness so much in recent years.
There are a number of amazing meditation and mindfulness apps available on the App Store and Google Play, and continuing to add more every month. Theses applications guide you through the process of mindful meditation, whether it’s your first time or 60th.
The goal is to train your newly found skills of awareness and stress reduction.
Consider downloading and trying one.
3. Get Some Help
Bringing a new mindful perspective to your life can be challenging. Don’t be afraid to ask someone at your organization who champions wellness or engages in mindfulness practice for help or tips.
Being mindful can be just as much of an individual journey as it can be a team effort.
“What Should I Ask?”
It’s certainly easier said than done, just to “ask for help”.
Consider starting with questions such as:
- How do you practice mindfulness throughout your day?
- What were your biggest challenges in the beginning?
- Do you have any resources you’d recommend?
Most wellness professionals will happily detail the steps they take to practice mindfulness in their daily lives, and you can learn some amazing skills by listening to their insight.
“I Don’t Know Anyone Who Practices Mindfulness”
Never fear if you currently don’t know any mindful practitioners.
There have been a number of books, podcasts, and YouTube channels centered around topics of becoming your best version, including mindfulness practices. Consider reading, watching or listening to a few.