Ever feel anxious, overwhelmed and wish life could be simpler?
Especially with the new school year upon us, life can feel chaotic. Getting our kids back into the routine of the school year can be daunting. As the season changes, we need to stay present to the changing needs we and our children have. Let’s not use these circumstances as reasons to lose presence. Let’s make them a reason to double down on our commitments to being mindful, restful, and kind.
Practicing mindfulness can help alleviate our anxious feelings. With mindfulness techniques, we can learn to watch our thoughts and create a little distance between them and us. The result, we may feel calmer and more present. We can gain more control over our emotions and decision-making. Mindfulness can help us to appreciate each of life’s small moments, too.
Will you commit to integrating mindfulness into your day?
Look away from your device and take in the moment: Ever notice getting caught up in your phone, constantly needing to check it? Create conscious time away from your device and support the children you love in doing the same. And if you notice you’re mindlessly scrolling, take note and make the choice to take a technology break.
Savor the moment. One of the properties of gladdening the mind is our ability to savor. Savoring can be done when we take a bite of food. It can also be done when enjoying a hug or a lovely song. Savoring the moment can help you to stay present, feel joyful, and pass on the joy to others through your embodied presence.
Eating? Take time on your first bite and use all your senses to enjoy it profoundly. Take a mindful moment when you eat. What does it taste like? Smell like? Feel like? Enjoy the food you are consuming. Notice the textures, colors, smells, and sensations of eating your food. Pair your enjoyment with gratitude for an even more powerful effect. Think or say, “I am grateful for this food.”
Make an accomplishment list at the end of your day. Toss out the to-do list and try not to dwell on what you weren’t able to get to. Instead, be proud of what you accomplished and reward yourself for your great work. Take a breath of appreciation as you write down each thing you accomplished that day, no matter how big or small the achievement.
Wash your hands. No, really… take the time and wash your hands! Mindful moments can be made at any time. Next time you wash your hands, take the time and be in the moment. Feel the sensation of washing your hands and get them clean! What does the soap smell like? How does the water feel as it drips down your hands?
If you take a few moments a day to be mindful, with simple mindfulness exercises, you will notice changes. Your mind will thank you! And our children are watching and learn to be like us. All the more reason to have increased instances of presence in our behaviors.