5 Ways to Practice Mindfulness

Have you ever wondered what it means to live in the present? Aren’t we all here, now, in the present?
Technically, yes, but for so many of us, we are only 10 percent here.
The great news is you can learn to be more present and mindful.
Here are 5 easy ways you can practice mindfulness in your daily life.


1. Eat mindfully.

When you scoff down your dinner on autopilot while distracted by the television, computer or constant conversation, you miss out on the delicious taste and smell of your food. You are also less likely to feel satisfied and nourished, because you ‘missed out’ on the fact that you ate.
It can be helpful to remember this phrase: When you eat, eat. When you drink, drink.
In other words, don’t attempt to do fifty other things when you sit down to a meal. Simply focus all of your attention on what is in front of you.
2. Walk mindfully.

Simply put, when you are out and about, pay attention occasionally to the movement of your body and your surroundings.
Notice as your feet connect with and leave the ground. Feel your muscles moving and supporting you.
Observe what is going on around you — the sights, sounds and life unfolding. You may be amazed to find a whole new world you hadn’t even noticed before.
3. Observe your breathing.

Your breathing occurs naturally and rhythmically.
When you pay attention to it, it takes you out of your mind and into your body. You momentarily free yourself from your thoughts, worries and fears, and you remind yourself of who you really are — your inner spirit, not your thoughts. Why not take a moment to focus on your breathing now?
4. Connect with your senses.

Your senses — touch, smell, taste, sound and sight — are your gateway into the present moment.
But when you are lost in thought, you don’t experience what your senses are picking up.
Pause to soak up the beautiful aroma of your afternoon tea or coffee. The salty ocean air. The bustle of the town. The beauty and diversity of flowers in your neighbour’s garden. The mouth-watering waft of wood-fire pizza coming from your local Italian restaurant as you pass by. Notice how your clothing feels against your body. The soft clean bed sheets on your skin in the morning. The comforting warmth of your last hug. The grass under your feet. The sensation of water and bubbles on your hands as you do the washing up.
Put love and attention into the simple tasks of your day, and you will be amazed how much joy and peace they can bring you.
Lastly,
5. Observe your thoughts and emotions.

You are not your thoughts — you are the observer of your thoughts. The fact that you can listen to them shows that they are not you. You are something higher and separate.
By simply becoming aware of your thoughts and non-judgmentally observing them as they come and go — like clouds passing in the sky — you are being more present. You are not getting caught up in your thoughts and forgetting that they are not you.
As you observe, resist the temptation to get carried away by a particular thought down a tunnel into the past or future. Picture your thoughts like trains at the station – you’re on the platform watching them come and go, but you’re not going to jump on and go for a ride.
Before you leave this article, I encourage you to take a moment to pause, take a deep breath, and sense what it’s like to be alive in this very moment. This moment is your life.

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