In today’s fast-paced society, it can be difficult to stop and smell the roses. There are important meetings to get to, soccer practices and neighborhood safety committees to attend. Taking a break to just be in the moment and observe what is around you is a key way to keep the mind fresh and alert. Sitting on your phone for twenty minutes does not count. Instead, use quick mindfulness exercises to realign yourself with the universe and de-stress.
Incorporating mindfulness into your life is not difficult. Many people hear the word and instantly think of hour long meditation sessions in silence. While mindfulness meditation does exist, being mindful in your daily routine does not need to take long. In fact, engaging in mindfulness exercises can lead to being more productive and level-headed.
Simple breathing is one quick and easy way to slow down and rejuvenate. Set your phone alarm and take a one to five minute break every so often where you engage in deep breathing exercises. If you work in an open setting, try putting on headphones. Even without music, this will tell colleagues “do not disturb.” Additionally, taking a pause to take a deep breath before sending that angry email to your colleague may encourage you to reevaluate the situation.
Another great way to remain mindful is to stop hating so much. You may think the term simply refers to children, but how much time did you spend cursing the guy in front of you in line at the post office today for taking 15 extra minutes? And how often do you see a celebrity on a tabloid and say to yourself, “she is really a hot mess.” All of these small incidences of judging add up to enough negativity to fill a day. The next time you want to honk when someone cuts you off, let it go.
Along those same lines, avoiding real-life drama among friends, family members or colleagues. Small talk turns into gossip pretty quickly, whether you want it to or not. You do not have to become silent when your sister-in-law starts dishing on the ongoing battle between her and the other moms at the park. Simply acknowledge the issue at hand, and gently change the subject to something more neutral or positive, such as an upcoming event or world issue.
Mindfulness practice does not have to be a massive life-changing addition. By slipping a few exercises into your daily routine, you will be more alert and peaceful in no time. Stay away from the negativity and drama and stay in the moment for a happy and healthy future.