What if we tell you, you don’t really live a major portion of your life. No, we are not talking about the time spent toiling in the office, when you could have embarked on a solo journey to self-discovery, or the tens of thousands of moments spent stuck in the traffic when you could have given an impromptu dance performance, with everyone applauding and cheering. We are talking about the time you spend inside your head, contemplating about the past and worrying about the future. Your brain already has a lot on its plate, helping you with your senses to carrying out cognitive functions, add to that the burden of the past and anxiety about the future, the mind becomes a race car without any break. And we all know what happens to it.
Hence it is crucial to come back to the ‘now’, to reconnect what is there in the present moment. Mindfulness is not something that became a fad of some sort in recent times. Gautam Buddha preached about it thousands of years ago in the fertile plains of India. And his message remains relevant to the present day as it did thousands of years ago.
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If you also want to practise mindfulness, a state where you are completely aware of your surroundings, your feelings and thoughts, there are ways you can do that. But before you begin, remember that it is a slow and long process, which needs patience and focus. So, don’t get discouraged or rattled midway.
How To Practise Mindfulness?
1# Pay Attention
First and foremost, pay attention to the present moment, your environment, the people around you. When outdoor, just observe the nature around, the plants, the sky, the people. Not only your surroundings, pay attention to your thoughts and emotions as well. What’s making you feel a certain way, what is the reason behind your thought. Chances are it might help you with better judgment.
2# Use Your Senses
Most of the time, we are so consumed in our thoughts that we use our senses in an autopilot mode. Next time, use those senses of sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste, as a gateway to mindfulness. When you sit down to eat, just eat, instead of watching TV, catching up on news, or in your thoughts. Just look at your food, how it feels on your hand, its texture, its smell, its taste. Make it a mindful experience and not just something you have to do to keep alive.
3# Have An Accepting Attitude
Let’s face it, you’ll not be completely in the present until you are stuck in the past or in the future, or when you are busy forming judgments or thinking about how would react to your certain thing. For being mindful, what you need is an open, non-judgmental, and accepting attitude, when you are ready to absorb everything and just be happy with what all is there in the present.
4# Accept Yourself
All of us tend to be extremely hard on ourselves. That’s because we all try to fix ourselves to fit into a particular ideal, which doesn’t exist in the first place. For making peace with the past and the future, it is crucial to accept yourself. Just remember, a large part of you that you’re busy fixing, needs no fixing in the first place.
5# Just Flow
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Every one of us has a certain activity which brings us immense happiness. It’s that activity, which brings our body, mind, and soul together. And when this happens, we get into a stance of flow. And at that moment, nothing matters, neither the past nor the future and the present is the only thing we are left with. So to be mindful, incorporate such activity in your daily, or weekly, routine. It could be dancing, singing, painting, cooking, or anything you like.
Lastly, do remember it begins with your breath. Just focus on that and you’ll soon realise that you are slowing down, and reconnecting to the present moment. Just remember to reconnect with your breath whenever you feel out of touch with the present moment.
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