You’ve probably heard the word “mindfulness” get thrown around a lot lately. It’s being used everywhere from medical blogs to mental health sites, to marketing campaigns. But, it’s more than just a buzzword.
Practicing mindfulness can help to improve your physical health, reducing the risk of things like heart conditions and lowering blood pressure. It can also help your mental health by lowering your stress and anxiety levels.
Don’t let the recent popularity of mindfulness steer you away from trying it. With just a few minutes each day, you can be more present, live in the moment, and feel more relaxed. So, grab your yoga or pilates mats, make time for yourself, and use these daily mindfulness practices to absorb what’s around you at all times.
1. Learn to Breathe
This might sound silly, but breathing correctly is at the very core of mindfulness. Find a quiet place to sit, close your eyes, and focus solely on your breath. Inhale deeply and slowly, and exhale just as slowly. Pay attention to how that breath feels in your lungs and how it feels when you release it.
Deep breathing exercises like this can help you to let go of stress and be mindful of the present moment while letting negative thoughts go. The best part? You can do this anywhere, any time of day.
2. Notice Your Emotions
In general, many of us try to ignore our emotions or deny them on a daily basis. No one wants to feel weak or angry or even sad. Unfortunately, hiding your emotions or trying to bottle them up never works. In the end, they will eventually come out in some way. If you’ve been bottling them up for a long time, they will likely manifest themselves in worse ways, and you may not be able to control them.
When you’re practicing mindfulness, you have the opportunity to recognize your emotions for what they are. Allow them to come and go freely as you acknowledge and accept them. Hang on to the positive ones, and let the negative ones leave on their own once you’ve acknowledged them.
3. Be Present in What You Love
Are you a bookworm? Do you love cooking? Are you a nature-enthusiast? One way to practice mindfulness is to do it while you’re participating in something you love. Mindfulness means being all in with whatever you’re doing. When you already are enjoying yourself, it’s easier to open up your mind and allow thoughts to freely come and go.
Plus, practicing mindfulness while you’re doing something you love allows you to be completely invested in that particular action. As a result, you’ll get even more enjoyment and fulfillment out of it without getting distracted by other things.
It’s so easy to get lost in the habits and routine of everyday life. But, if you’re feeling stressed, overwhelmed, or even discouraged (especially during these uncertain times), mindfulness can help to boost your mental health and physical health all at once. Keep these tips in mind to make it a priority in your life each day.