I discussed how practicing mindfulness can help you solidify a better, sustainable fitness, and overall physical goals here, but what are the daily practices that can help cultivate this mindfulness? Here are 7 that you can start doing today!
When we think of mindfulness, we automatically think meditation, and for good reason. Meditation is the staple of mindfulness. Meditation practice helps us to simply sit and be with whatever arises in our busy minds. A regular meditation practice can help reduce anxiety, depression, and stress, It can also improve your physical health, as meditation has been shown to boost the immune system and lower blood pressure.
2. Practice Gratitude
Being grateful is a way to always see the bigger picture. Acknowledging the many things you are grateful for, even when things are not going your way, helps you to be more mindful of all the positive things that are in your life, even when you’re at your all-time low. People who regularly write down what they are grateful for are more optimistic, feel better about their lives, and even have fewer visits to the physician.
3. Just Breathe
“Spend a few minutes every day doing ‘Square Breathing. One of the best things to come out of my yoga teacher training! This is a simple breath practice that you can do anytime, anywhere. Inhale for four counts. Hold for four counts. Exhale for four counts. Hold for four counts. This helps to regulate the nervous system, which is always good for stress and impulsive reactions.
4. Enjoy your meals
Being present with your meal helps us enjoy our eating experiences and listen to our body’s internal signals that guide our eating. Mindful eating — which includes savoring your food with all your senses, pausing between bites, and avoiding distractions — has been shown to help people have better-eating habits and have a healthier relationship.
Sometimes we hurry so quickly through our day, we don’t take the time to smile at others — hello resting bitch face anyone? The more you smile at people the more positive energy comes back to you, It’s simple, easy and you’ll be surprised by how effective it is, Studies show that smiling at others helps you release the feel-good neurotransmitters do. Dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin.
Daily movement and a good sweat session can do wonders in emptying the mind from distractions, sending those feel-good hormones rushing through your body. Find a form of exercise that doesn’t feel like mindless hard work (for me, that’s running on a treadmill) If you start enjoying the task at hand, you’re more likely to become present in it.
7. Get into nature
It can be your garden or a morning road run, or a more serious hike in the forest. Whether you’re a city slicker or a bushbaby, taking some time to connect in nature, to admire the changing of the seasons and the natural beauty around you is good for the mind, body, and soul.