Life is full of distractions. There are multitudes of things that demand our attention every day, pulling us in different directions. Work, family, friends and personal issues often distract us from simple moments to be savored—or tasks and responsibilities that should be addressed in the moment. Mindfulness can help quiet some of these distractions and allow you to lead a more balanced life. Mindfulness is the practice of living in, and being aware of, the present moment, free from judgment and overthinking. The more you practice, the more mindful you may become. These tips can help you get started.
Notice the world around you
Try to appreciate the small details of your life. For example, take notice of the sky as you commute to work. Take notice of the color, the positioning of the clouds, and whether the sun or moon is up.
Be actively engaged
Whether you are working on a project, having a conversation, reading a book or watching a movie, give whatever it is you are doing your full attention. For example, if you’re having a conversation with a friend, be sure to make eye contact, make appropriate facial expressions to convey understanding, ask relevant questions and make statements that show you’re listening.
Learn to let go
Are there past events or experiences that you just can’t seem to shake? The truth is, no matter how much you think about them, you can’t change the past. Let go of the things you can’t control and focus on the one thing you can: the decisions you make in the present.
Worrying about any possible future outcomes can prevent you from living in the moment. While some worrying is normal, being overly worried to the point of anxiety can prevent you from living in the moment. When you find yourself worrying, remind yourself to stop and refocus on the present moment.
Many of us move through life on autopilot. Part of this is due to our normal routines, and part is due to wanting to address the demands of our lives in an expedient manner. As you go through your day, acknowledge the tasks you’re completing and be mindful while you’re doing them. Think about the task and what is going on while you’re performing it.
Slow down and do less
Similar to being on autopilot, doing too much, too quickly and too often reduces our ability to be present. Prioritize your to-do list and make sure that you’re focusing on what is necessary while allowing yourself to do things for pleasure.
Try some or all of these tips daily to help you be more mindful and savor every moment!