Meditation and Mindfulness are areas of wellness that have begun to be quite mainstream. Gone are the days when it was only yogis and monks participating in the practice. Large corporations, even schools are introducing the teachings and encouraging participation in mindfulness and meditation to help reduce stress, improve emotional responses and to increase our self-awareness.
Collen Ricci found that the Australian created mindfulness app, Smiling Mind “has been downloaded more than 350,000 times, boasts more than 5000 education program participants, and is used by companies such as Google and IBM Australia. Recent funding from the Victorian Government has enabled the program's evaluation to take place in numerous government schools.”
I personally was introduced to mindfulness after a period of anxiety .
I was looking and trialling different tools to help reduce my symptoms. I signed up for a local 8 week course with some friends and it was the best thing I ever did. Each week we tried a different kind of meditation and each member of the class would share their experience on the day.
Now you don’t need to do a course as I did but I realised, not only do I enjoye the practice of meditation, but at the time it was fun to have my “thing” to look forward to doing each week.
Mindfulness is such an amazing technique for each of us to master because it requires next to no tools and money to participate.
If you are a beginner, apps like smiling mind or even YouTube clips that provide guided meditations are a helpful way to start and keep you on track. One of the biggest lessons I learnt early on in mindfulness is that our minds are meant to think and that is okay. Meditation is not about blocking out thoughts, rather it is about having a single thought. You want to reduce the racing thoughts and focus on one thing, in the present moment.
Even though I am not a Mama myself I think this practice is so important for those that are, and to give it a go.
Many years ago whilst watching Oprah I remember her saying something along the lines of this Greg Mortenson quote: “If you teach a boy, you educate an individual; but if you teach a girl, you educate a community.” This has always stuck with me.
I truly believe that this applies to mindfulness as well. If as a Mama you can show to your children that mindfulness is an everyday practice. One that grounds you and helps to reduce stress and anxiety, isn’t that one of the greatest tools you could pass onto your children!
I can understand for many of us the idea of fitting in meditation along with everything else in our day can just seem too much. This is why I wrote about and believe in mindful moments as a practical way to incorporate mindfulness into every day.
I also love this passage I came across in Ariana Huffington’s book Thrive:
“I was under the impression that I had to ‘do’ meditation. And I didn’t have time for another burdensome thing to ‘do’. Fortunately a friend pointed out that we don’t ‘do’ meditation, it ‘does’ us. That opened the door for me. The only thing I had to ‘do’ in meditation is nothing. Even writing that I don’t have to ‘do’ one more thing makes me relax.” (P40)
Here are a few quick tips of ways to incorporate mindfulness into your day. It really can be quite simple.
Then you can try to:
As you can see, this is what makes mindfulness so easy to implement, you can do it in a way that suits you and it still has the same effect on your body and mood.
I would love to hear your experiences with mindfulness x
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