Every day we talk about being a #Girlboss and hustling to get things done. We multitask and prioritize. We feel guilty on those lazy days where we accomplish nothing but a Netflix binge. We are constantly checking our emails and use every event as way to Network. We use our social media sites as our personal brand and always critique ourselves on whether or not the image we just posted fits our theme.
This week, the task I pulled out of my resolution jar was to practice mindfulness and honestly, I was equally excited for the challenge and confused on how to actually become mindful. According to Merriam-Webster, Mindfulness is “the practice of maintaining a nonjudgmental state of heightened or complete awareness of one’s thoughts, emotions, or experiences on a moment-to-moment basis.”
The first two days of the week I researched everything I could about mindfulness to help me find some ways to start implementing it into my life. I realized that being mindful is a conscious choice you must always have in the back of your mind. Here are six of the ways I become more mindful this week:
- Practice Yoga: Three weeks ago I downloaded the Kayla Itsines Sweat App because it was finally time to take my physical health into my own hands. I’ve really enjoyed the workouts and positive impact it has had on my energy however, I’ve noticed that I don’t always feel as rejuvenated and in tune with my body as I do after a yoga class. Yoga is just as much about physical health as it is mental health so this week I am making yoga a priority and adding it into my workout. (I like to use Yoga With Adriene when I am at home and can’t make it to a yoga class)
- Practice Meditation: Meditation is one of the most popular mindfulness techniques because it is centered around improving your self-awareness and has many health benefits like stress reduction, improved concentration, body acceptance, happiness and improved immune health. I started this week knowing absolutely nothing about meditation so guided meditation videos on Youtube and apps on my iPhone were total necessities.
- Listen to Hunger Cues: This is not about weight-loss or healthy eating. This is about being aware of your body and trusting that it will communicate whatever it needs to you. I constantly carry snacks around with me and eat lunch whenever I have a free second at work and patients are not demanding my focus so listening to my body was extremely difficult but so rewarding. This week has taught me how incredibly amazing my body is and how even if I think negatively about it, it will alway protect me and communicate to me.
- Focus on your breathing: Deep breathing is a skill that I teach my patients every day at work but never practice on my own. Deep breathing will not only help reduce stress but it will promote happiness and induce a sense of calmness. I created an alarm on my phone every day and then used five minutes to check in with my body and focus on deep breathing.
- Eat in silence: This is SO hard for me because I never want to ‘waste’ a second of my day however, I need to realize that writing a blog post while having dinner is not ideal. I need to learn to slow down and focus on the task at hand. When you eat in silence and practice deep breathing between bites your parasympathetic nervous system becomes activated and thus supporting and aiding in digestion. When you are fighting with someone, doing something stressful, distracted in a task or watching a suspenseful show while eating your sympathetic nervous system turns on shutting down digestion.
- Focus on one task: I am the queen of having multiple tabs open. I start a blog post and then get distracted by Instagram and then check my emails. This week I practiced mindfulness by working on a single task and then completing it before moving forward. #GoodbyeMultitasking.
How do you practice mindfulness in your daily life?