With so many things vying for our time and attention, it is more important than ever before to understand the concept of presence and lead a life of mindfulness. Mindful living can look different for each person, but as a general rule, ‘mindfulness’ is the state of being open, attentive and receptive to the present moment right in front of you. It does sound simple, but it’s much harder than it sounds.
Here is a list of techniques that you can practice for sharpening your mindfulness and practicing the art of ‘now’:
- Commit to Active Listening
In order to practice active listening, one must put down your phone and donate 100% of the present moment to the person who is speaking. Doing this will allow your brain to empathise more effectively with other people and become fully immersed in conversation. When you stop making situations about you and let go of self-consciousness about what the other person/people might be thinking about you or what you’re going to say next, then you can truly live in the present and get the most out of your interactions. You’ll find that conversations flow more freely and genuinely and the person you’re speaking to will rightly feel more valued and heard. Facebook can wait!
- Try a ‘thought download’
When you are feeling overwhelmed with your racing thoughts, try ‘downloading’ them to a piece of paper. The physical act of recognising your thoughts, writing them down, releasing them to the Universe and then folding the piece of paper away is a powerful exercise that invokes self-confidence and power over your situation.
- Look at every moment as a choice
In every moment, we have the choice to be present or to be somewhere else. For instance, instead of eating lunch at your desk while answering emails or scrolling the Internet, you can simply choose to eat your lunch in the sunshine without any multi-tasking whatsoever. The more we choose to be present, the better you will become at simply ‘being’. And when we learn to just ‘be’, gratitude will naturally flow and happiness becomes more abundant.
- Try Meditation and/or yoga
Spend some time being still and reconnecting to yourself without any external stimulation or noise. When you practice yoga, you learn to sync your breath with your movement which helps you to slow down and clear your mind. The long list of things you need to get done or the conversations you’ve had that day slowly disappear and you are able to exist in that moment, honouring your mind and body just as it is. Meditation has similar powerful benefits in concentrating on your breath and letting go of the white noise in your head. At first, it’s not an easy exercise but with practice and a willingness to bring it into your daily routine, it can become one of the purest forms of connecting to the here and now, plus you can do it anywhere with no fancy equipment needed!
- Practice Curiosity
Appreciate the miracles that are all around us, the things we take for granted. Take the time to look at the world again through the eyes of a child with wonder and excitement and less pre-conceived or predetermined analysis and judgment. Start each day fresh and new with an open mind and heart to welcome in what the day brings.
Miranda Murray has personally undergone 10 unsuccessful IVF treatments, resulting in a life-changing divorce and complete re-evaluation of her purpose in the world. Through her commitment to charity work and life coach training, Miranda learnt the skills to turn her life around and become the happiest and healthiest she has ever been. She is truly and emphatically passionate about communicating these skills to the community so women around the globe can learn what it’s like to feel valuable, liberated, and happy. Learn more here.