May is Mental Health Awareness Month and there is no better time than now to improve your overall well-being through self-care that focuses on meditation and mindfulness.
Beginning any new practice or habit is hard when self-limiting beliefs creep in and you are going through this journey alone. It was not until I made the decision to be intentional about my time and thoughts that I saw real change, and as equally as important, got other people involved. That way we could hold each other accountable, motivate one another and share where we are in the process. These discoveries and observations create movement/action, community, conversations, empathy, boosts mental well-being decreasing stress, depression and anxiety.
I know that time is valuable, but how many of us are truly present enough to enjoy it? Taking your power (and time) back begins with your awareness of where you are now. Not living in the past or for the future, but in the present moment. Awareness is an act of loving yourself (which includes your thoughts and feelings), without fear or judgement.
- MINDFUL MINUTE – a quick tip to motivate you to incorporate practices in mindfulness.
So this week I’m calling out all serial multitaskers (including myself)! Let’s ditch the rabbit hole of “productivity” and focus on our well-being by being fully present and more mindful.
This months mindful minute practice is for you to focus all of your attention on one thing at a time.
In order to build that awareness, let’s start with something we do daily like eating or *insert your choice of daily habit here.* Don’t attempt to do the fifty other things on your to do list when you sit down for a meal or drink a cup of coffee.
Pause to connect with your senses
That excitement you feel (or happy dance you do) when you see and smell your food making its way to your table, the way your clothes feel on your body, the sensation and healing nature of the water as you shower. Savor the experience.
Ground your thoughts in the moment so when you stand in front of the sink you associate it with hand washing or when you sit down to eat think, “When I eat, I eat.”
No need for constant stimulation. I know now more than ever we find ourselves watching the news, listening to podcasts/audiobooks and other multimedia which can be a distraction to get tasks done. Give yourself the space to be…breathe in moments of silence/stillness.
Make the shift
Lastly, enjoy more of the moments in between tackling that to do list. Notice when you are rushing, overthinking or on autopilot and shift your mindset. Take it from the Greek Stoic philosopher Epictetus: “We are disturbed not by the things that happen,” he observed, “but by our thoughts about the things that happen.” Simply it’s not that we are busy because of the length of our to-do list but because of our thoughts surrounding it.
Where are you at in the process? Do you have as many tabs open on your computer as you have active in your mind? What is most challenging about focusing all of your attention and thoughts on what’s in front of you? What helps you stay focused on completing one task at a time, can you feel the difference? Let’s keep the conversation going in the comments below.