How to Practice Mindfulness in 3 Easy Steps
Mindfulness is the practice of paying attention to the present moment. This can be done by focusing on what is going on inside your body, how you are feeling or what is going on outside of your body using the five senses. For example you can focus on all the the five senses while doing an everyday activity such as eating. Or noticing how you feel and where you feel it in your body, allowing the feeling to be and just noticing, without judgment.
Think of the practice of Mindfulness like a muscle you are working out, the more you practice the easier it gets. As you strengthen this skill you may see a reduction in anxiety and more positive emotions. Here are some tips to get started.
Find a comfortable place to practice, position doesn’t really matter you can have your legs crossed or even practice standing up as long as you are comfortable.
Take some times to focus on your breath, breathing in through your nose and out thought your mouth (focus on long exhales). Notice how your belly expands and contracts as you breath in and out, notice the cool air going in and warm air going out. Focusing on your breath is a great way to practice mind-body connection.
Allow any thoughts to come and go, do not fight them or try to control them. If you try not to think about pink elephants, guess what you will think about? Just acknowledge whatever thoughts come to mind and let them pass naturally. Once the thought has passed, focus on your breath again.
And that’s it! If you were able to follow the steps above you did it! You now have the skills to practice mindfulness on daily basis. I suggest practicing at least once a day, it is easier to remember to practice if it is the same time every day.
As you feel more comfortable practicing focusing on a single moment you can begin to add other parts of your routine to the practice of mindfulness.