How to be mindful
You’ve probably read a lot about how eating mindfully can help support you on your weight-loss journey. But did you know that mindfulness can also encourage a happier, healthier, and more positive outlook? And you don’t need any special tuition to get started…
What is mindfulness?
It sounds like something only die-hard yogis would get into, but mindfulness has become the relaxation method of choice in schools, workplaces and homes across the UK. It’s something we all can do, and it doesn’t have to be intimidating. Officially, mindfulness is a ‘way of training your mind to concentrate on the present, in order to feel calm and improve your mental state’. So, being mindful means giving complete and non-judgmental attention to your present experience. It’s about taking time out to really appreciating your surroundings, your food, or the task at hand so you can focus on what you enjoy, rather than what’s stressing you out or bringing you down.
Want to give it a go yourself? Here are a few ways to get started…
Walk it out
Mindful walking can help you incorporate mindfulness into any part of your day – well, whenever you’re up and about! Start by walking slowly, and pay close attention to how your feet, muscles, and legs feel as you move. If you feel your mind wandering, bring it back by honing in on the sensations you feel in your feet as they make contact with the floor – it’s all about focusing on how you feel when you’re walking.
Name your thoughts
It can be hard to completely free your mind of worries or fears, and mindfulness isn’t about making these thoughts and feelings go away. It’s about developing an awareness of them. Silently naming your thoughts can help you be more mindful of what you’re thinking. So, the next time you feel stressed or anxious, say to yourself: ‘This is anxiety.’ Or: ‘This is my fear of failure’.
Listen to your environment
Spend a minute in silence, really listening to what you can hear around you. You don’t need to worry about where sounds are coming from, just tune in and experience them, listening out for new sounds that you haven’t noticed before and acknowledging them.
Try something new
Do this every day. It could be something as big as trying out a new fitness class, or as small as sitting in a different seat around your dinner table. Switching up your routine could help you notice new things about the world around you.
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