There’s a lot of talk these days about being more mindful. What is mindfulness? While there are myriad ways experts define what being mindful means one thing is clear, to be mindful is to intentionally bring awareness about thoughts, actions and emotions in the the present moment without judgment.
It means letting things be as they are without changing them.
Anderson Cooper discussed his experience with mindfulness and John Kabat-Zinn on 60 Minutes. We’re hearing more and more about how meditation can not only change your life, but a Harvard study suggests that it may actually change your brain. The wonderful thing about being mindful is that you can start small. And it doesn’t require adding anything to your life, but simply opening yourself up to what is happening in the moment.
You can be more mindful at home, with your family and even at work. Here are three ways that you can bring mindfulness to your work day.
- Be present. Easier said than done. Mindfulness teaches us that by being in this moment we can truly accept things as they are. When this happens we can think about making real lasting change. Of course there are times when attention is divided, but it may be worth asking yourself if it always has to be. Soemtimes distracting ourselves and being ‘so busy’ is a way to avoid bigger issues that really need our attention.
- Breathe. I know. We are always breathing. But when we pay attention on purpose to how we are breathing the effects can be transformative. Find a place to be still and inhale for a count of four and then slowly exhale for a count of four. Do this three or four times and you may find that you are more calm and relaxed.
- Take a moment for yourself. Sounds like another luxury but taking a minute to stop doing and start being can improve your outlook. It can be done anywhere. Before flying out of the car to run into the office, set a timer for one-minute, close your eyes and listen to yourself breathe. You don’t have to do anything to how you are breathing. Just listen. You may be surprised what you hear.
Make 2015 your year of living mindfully. Namaste y’all.
If you would like to learn more and listen to a beginner meditation, click here