Have you ever noticed that the times when your mind is clear and calm, are the times when you are the most capable of solving problems, achieving tasks and handling tough situations?
When you become present and focused and there are no longer distractions taking your thoughts away from what is happening right now.
Like that expression ‘Are you mindful, or is your mind full?’
Life can be really hectic at times. There are so many responsibilities that come together to form our everyday lives, such as work, studies, family and friends, that our minds are often overflowing with thoughts about what happened yesterday, what we are going to do tomorrow and what will happen in the future, that we move through our days on an almost ‘auto pilot’.
Have you ever been driving along lost in thought, only to realise you don’t actually remember driving the last 10k? It can be a little disconcerting.
By actively cultivating a little more mindfulness into our lives, we start to become more present in each moment. This awareness helps us to develop better relationships with our friends and families, become more focused and clear at work and will also improve countless other areas of our lives.
I know it isn’t as easy as just deciding that you are going to be more present. Because it is often as little as minutes until the mind has wandered off in distraction and you have forgotten all about the present moment once more.
What we can do, is actively take steps to help cultivate more mindfulness into our daily lives to help us stay more present in each moment.
- Meditate - Meditation is a fantastic tool for helping calm the mind and helping us become a little more aware of how our minds behave. As you become more aware of the workings of your own mind, you learn to turn the volume down a little on those distracting thoughts and become more present in the moment.
- Practice yoga - Yoga is another excellent way of bringing your mind into your body, and the present moment. It is also a great way of releasing built up tension from your body and mind so that you feel calmer and more relaxed.
- Spend some time out in nature - Getting back to nature can have a really grounding effect on the mind. Perhaps you enjoy walking along the beach, or in a park, or reading a book in your garden? Even having a pot plant that you need to water each day can help.
- Slow things down - Instead of rushing from A-B, try to give yourself more time. Practice mindful eating and mindful walking, where you take the time to really focus on what you are doing and what is happening in the environment around you.
- Stop and smell the roses - Every now and then, stop what it is you are doing and take a moment to look around and appreciate the things you are grateful for (even being healthy and alive is worth a little gratitude!)