Mindfulness is filtering into every part of western society.Every body seems to be talking about it. During meditation class last night we discussed a couple of way’s to be more mindful during the day. How to use those moment that would usually push our buttons to just breath and cultivate our mindfulness. Moment like stuck in traffic on a Friday evening or picking the wrong queue at the supermarket. The funny thing is when we become self aware in these moment we see the beauty that surrounds us. The nice person who let’s you change lanes or the smile from the person in the queue beside you.
Here are a few tips’s that I suggest to the class on being more mindful during the day.
Check your posture
Throughout the day bring your awareness to your posture. Whether you are sitting, lying down or standing, just bring all your attention to your body. This technique has an immediate grounding effect and restores our mindfulness. The aim is to simply be aware of the sensations that the body is feeling right at that moment. Whether it feels the pressure of the couch, the ground underneath our feet, or a slight breeze on our arms; we simply scan our body up and down and notice whatever sensations are present. You only have to do this for a minute or two, then return your attention to whatever task you were doing. The aim is to try and remember to observe your posture and its sensations as often as you can throughout the day.
Enjoy queuing up!
When standing in line (for instance, if you are queuing up to buy lunch, waiting to use the ATM, or even waiting at the traffic lights), bring your attention to the present moment instead of being fixated on getting to the front and being served, or getting to your destination. Bring all your attention to your body, its posture and how it’s feeling. Take note of the environment and the people around you. Use the opportunity to take some deep mindful breaths and release any tension that might be in your body or your mind.
Notice 5 in 3 – See, Hear, Feel
Every now and then, challenge yourself to find five things that are part of your present experience. First notice five things that you can see with your eyes. They don’t necessarily have to be interesting; it might just be just a table, the carpet, the TV, a cup, and a plate in front of you. The aim is simply to bring your full awareness to your experience now in the present moment.
- Then notice five things you can hear. Keep listening until you’ve distinguished five different sounds.
- Then notice five things you can feel with your body. These might be the pressure of the couch, the material of your clothes, a slight breeze, tension in your neck, or air breathing into your nostrils.
- Then just rest your mind in this present moment awareness which you’ve just cultivated, and remain in that awareness for as long as you want. Then mindfully go back to your tasks.
“If we are not fully ourselves, truly in the present moment, we miss everything.” Thich Nhat Hanh