Mindfulness sounds complicated; but it is not so. Mindfulness requires you to pay attention to the present moment on purpose. It involves feeling what you’re seeing or doing right without judging it. If you are present, and are in the moment, you are mindful.
It is a very powerful practise to make an effort to be mindful during our routine activities at home, work and with family and friends. Up to 50 percent of our time is spent in our thought which doesn’t let us acknowledge and cherish the moment we are in. This is an important factor that contributes to our happiness.
Why can’t we be mindful while we walk, brush our teeth, commute home, or in the rain or look at a butterfly hovering around a flower? Why can’t we drop our auto-pilot mode that we get into while doing day-to-day activities? These moments offer an opportunity to apply mindfulness and to live our lives more fully in the present moment. Let’s do just that.
Have you ever noticed your movements when you are walking? We bet you haven’t. All you need is to add five minutes to your routine walk to the grocery store or the bus stop to work and observe how your foot lifts from the ground, how each new muscle engages, and the how it feels to move through space. You could also climb your stairs slowly and precisely.
How many times have you looked at the sky in the last month or year, apart from just turning your head up to curse the sun for causing so much heat? Can’t remember? That’s exactly the problem. Look up at the sky, notice the phase of the moon, wonder where the sun is right now, see the clouds moving through the space, look for signs of rain. This will not only make you feel at present, but will also give you a chance to have witnessed a beautiful sight.
Shower is a daily battle for most people as all that they think of is to control the water temperature and to hasten up so that they don’t get late for work. Showering mindfully makes you aware of how good the warm water feels when it washes your skin. Take a moment to enjoy the fragrance of your shower gel, the sensation of your hands rubbing your skin. Be mindful about the amount of water you are using and listen carefully to the sound of the water coming to a halt.
You don’t think it is humanly possible to enjoy anything while you are squashed into the train or the bus. But trust us, it is. Look around you at people and recognise the fact that they are experiencing the same problem as you are. Observe the environment and recognise your resistance to it; be mindful of the journey and how the ride feels. Was your ride bumpy, comfortable or smooth?
Even the idea of a queue makes you twitch and it fills you with impatience. You do something or the other to escape the boredom of waiting. But why wouldn’t you want to be mindful of the way you stand, your breath, the way you interact with people around you and scan your body for tensions? Be aware of your tendency to distract yourself from the present moment.
Living mindfully enriches your life incredibly, helps prevent stress and depression, makes your life be full of freedom, dignity, and respect for yourself and others.
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