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What do we get from having more mindful moments?

February 21, 2018

It’s been a few years since I first heard the term ‘mindfulness’ and I am constantly learning new ways in which to be more mindful.  The simplest way to describe mindfulness is that it brings your focus into the here and now.  As someone who tends to spend a lot of time analysing what has happened in the past and planning what’s going to happen in my future, mindfulness is a great way for me to re-centre and live more of my life in the present moment.

 

I have tried all sorts of guided mindfulness practices and tried to do everyday activities more mindfully, where I really tune into my senses and take notice of the sensations I experience as I go about normal daily tasks, like washing the dishes or taking a shower. 

 

Over the last few months I have been listening to an excellent podcast series called ‘The Mindful Kind’ by Rachael Kable.  Once of the things I love about the podcasts is that Rachael gives some great tips on how to weave mindfulness into your day.  A suggested activity I particularly enjoyed was to take photos throughout your day of mindful moments and then reflect on them at the end of the day. 

 

This activity really helped me be more present in the moment and made me more grateful for things that I may normally have taken for granted.

 

Getting ready for the day

 

During the autumn and winter months, when I wake up and it is still pitch-black

outside, I struggle to get going in the morning.  My first photos from the day made me realise how I find great comfort from a few morning rituals and how they reflect some things that are important in my world. 

 

After saying good morning to my dogs, I always head to the kettle to make myself the first cup of tea of the day and

re-hydrate my body with a glass of water. 

 

I have done this for years and yet taking a photo of it really made me think how I am taking care of myself as soon as I get up and that made me feel pretty good about myself! 

 

Next was getting school lunches and bags prepared.  This is a task that I sometimes do at night and other times in the morning.  I must admit that I often view it as a chore that I would rather not have to do but when I was being mindful, I realised that this activity gives me a small window of peace before the rest of the family wakes up and where I can gradually let my body and mind wake up.   I also liked that at the beginning of the day I am doing something that benefited someone else and is a part of my most important job – being mum! 

 

The beauty of nature

 

I think I was super lucky on the day that I chose to try out having a mindful day as it was a beautiful sunny, crisp autumnal day, so I was able to get some great photos.  Just the act of taking photos made me appreciate how bright and blue the sky was and how vivid the autumnal colours were.  I was aware of how much wildlife I was exposed to when walking the dogs.  Some horses came to say hello, goats were grazing and there was lots of beautiful bird song.  I immersed myself in the richness of the world around me and it really did make me feel alive!

 

 

 

Guilt free self-care

 

My mindful day included some activities that were acts of self-care. 

 

This was particularly possible as the kids were at school and I was able to schedule my own day to complete some work for my business and then get on with some errands and activities relating to my personal life. 

 

I had a trip into town to have an eye-test and whilst there I took it as an opportunity to go to my favourite café to have some lunch and eat it mindfully.  I was able to browse around some charity shops and pick up a few clothing bargains and then go for a run at a local park. 

 

All of these things nourish me in some way and once upon a time I would have felt guilty for taking the time out to do them, but now I understand that to be the best version of me in all forms (mother, wife, business owner, employee, etc), I have to take the time out to nurture myself and recharge my own batteries so I can then be on top of my game!  Being more mindful of these activities made me realise how far I have come with changing my outlook on life and implementing the resilience and wellbeing practices that I encourage others to try. 

 

Simple family time

 

I was more mindful during the school run and conscious of the environment where my children are learning and growing day by day and of the big hugs they gave me when they came out.  Something I know won’t happen forever! 

 

I was more mindful as they played in the park and I noticed how they naturally immerse themselves in what they are doing right in that moment.  I was more mindful that evening when we cuddled up on sofa and made aware of how much smaller my daughters hand was next to mine and how she is still able to snuggle up to me. 

I was more mindful of how much love I have for them. 

 

 

My mindful day not only helped me experience things more mindfully, but it also helped me to practice gratitude and take more enjoyment in some of my daily activities.

 

Why not give it a go? 

 

It might just be what you need to start leading a more mindful life. 

 

If you would like to try out my mindful chocolate eating activity or Mindful Teddy Tummy time with children, then head over to my Resources page. 

 

More information about the Mindful Kind podcasts is available at

http://www.rachaelkable.com/podcast/

 

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