Our lives are often running at an extremely fast speed. From trying to get through studies, or making ends meet, running a family, to maintaining a social life, we are in a constant rush to get from one moment to another. Between the occasional challenges and roadblocks, there is often never time to take a break and live in the moment.
This sense of urgency, cultivated by a culture that promotes the need to keep hustling, often does not allow a moment to pause and take a breather. We are stuck in a rat race to build a life but are we living?
This is where mindfulness comes in. Mindfulness means pausing and focusing on being present in the moment and fully realizing and understanding one’s surroundings. It is the practice of being aware of our thoughts, feelings, and bodily actions and has various benefits. Let’s discuss some interesting ways to bring mindfulness into our daily lives.
Take some time out for your belief systems
In our daily firefighting, we often don’t take time out for the things that bring us the most peace. One example is delegating time out of our busy schedules for our belief systems. Mindfulness has roots in religion, so if you are religiously inclined, there are many ways in which you can work through your rituals and practices to achieve a state of peace and zen.
If you belong to the Catholic faith, you can build a routine that keeps Catholicism at the heart of its practices. For example, practicing habits and traits prescribed by Catholic Saints can help bring a sense of calm to your life. You can take an hour out of your day to read through their life stories and sayings to feel grounded and more present. If you belong to any other religion, you can incorporate a daily ritual pertaining to that belief, such as taking time to read a prayer or verse from a Holy book.
Spend some time outside
If your daily rut starts to take a toll on your mental health, you need to take a break. One of the best ways to do this is by connecting with nature. Spending time outside in the great outdoors is an ideal way to unplug and unwind from the daily mundane tasks that cause stress and anxiety.
Surrounding yourself with nature allows you to practice mindfulness and be present in the moment. The best way to do this is by taking time to go for a walk or jog early in the morning. There is a unique sense of calm in the early hours of the day as people are still sleeping, allowing for peace. You can even take a break from work, take a camping trip to the mountains, and connect with nature. Focus on the surroundings and the sights, smells, and sensations it offers.
Eat with focus and without distractions
Eating is a habit that we often do automatically. We feel hungry, we act and reach out for snacks or a meal that we prepare. We do it quickly and in haste to move on and do the next item on the agenda. This often leads to unhealthy eating habits and, generally, stress on the body.
So one of the best ways to practice mindfulness is through eating, and here is how you do it. When you sit down to eat, eliminate different distractions that surround you. This could include cell phones and the television. Really be present in the moment and feel the food in front of you and as you eat. Focus on the sensation of swallowing a bite and it going down your stomach and the effect it produces. Think about how your meal is nourishing your body. Take small controlled bites, and don’t eat in haste.
Also, listen to what your body is telling you in moments of hunger. Don’t reach out for food that is unhealthy but one that adds value to your body. Once you get the hang of being mindful while you eat, you will soon begin to see the positive effects on your gut and digestion. Since you typically have three meals a day, this will help turn mindfulness into a habit quickly.
As we rush through each step in our life, mindfulness is the perfect way to slow things down and bring a sense of meaning to every action and task. It can help you feel acutely aware of your surroundings and to feel truly alive. Achieving this is a slow and gradual process, but take small steps using our recommendations, and you will begin to feel grounded and in the moment in no time.