Simple Mindfulness - Lucy Barrett


Mindfulness is the process of bringing your awareness to the present moment. While there are many various types of meditations the aspect of mindfulness runs through most of them. Integrating some simple mindfulness into your busy life will have wonderful effects for your mind and body such as reducing anxiety and rumination, improving concentration, reducing insomnia and even aiding weight loss.

Here are 5 tips to bring mindfulness into your everyday life.

1.     Toilet time.

Yep, we all use the toilet for our most basic bodily functions so why not use it for some mindfulness? Notice the sounds and smells, notice where your feet touch the ground, straighten your spine and notice how your body feels. Stopping for just a few deep breaths in the toilet will bring a calm to your day.

2.     Slow it down.

Make a point of slowing down simple actions . Making a cup of tea? Pour your water slower. Notice the touch of your spoon in the cup. Making dinner? Stir the pot much, much slower. Walking from the car to work? Take 5 steps slower than you usually would. Yes, you can spare the extra 30 seconds.

3.     Breathe.

This is a universal anchor to your present moment experience. Your breath is always there for you to notice and tune into. Relax your shoulders, release your jaw and take 10-20 breaths. No need to change your breath, just notice it to begin with. This practice has a positive effect on blood pressure, stress levels and muscle tension.

4.     Be body aware.

At any time of the day, your body can bring you back to the moment. Check your posture. Your shoulders. Your belly. Tuning into your body in space will pull you to the present moment and will get you out of your busy head. Building hooks into your day to remind you of this technique, such as practicing in the shower every morning or when you are in the car are great ways to ensure you remember to do this.

5.     The moments add up.

The neuronal pathways in our brain are like train tracks which is why it takes time to break habits and start new ones. Choosing moments of mindfulness builds positive and calming pathways in the brain and calms our whole body. Even if you cannot sit in meditation for 20 minutes per day, the moments you spend in conscious mindfulness add up and perpetuate a snowball effect in the brain and body. Do what you can.