Do you ever take even just ten seconds to stop what you are doing and live in the present moment? Do you ever close your eyes and really think about how lucky you are to be alive, healthy, and happy? Do you ever look around, and think about your place in this world and the space you occupy? If so, congrats! You are practicing mindfulness! If you are unsure, that is okay. You can easily take a mindfulness quiz online to determine if you are practicing mindfulness.
Stop being overwhelmed about matters you cannot change. Stop freaking out over small situations that do not involve you. Stop stressing on the future. Stop stressing on the past. Start ‘stressing’ on the NOW. By stressing, I don’t mean obsessing or overthinking about it. What I mean is start living it. Think about how you are feeling, emotionally, physically, socially, and spiritually. What exactly are you doing? Are you giving it all your effort and focus? Where are you? Is it a place you really want to be? Where do you want to be?
Being mindful is not as easy as it looks. With the busy, demanding and hectic lives we lead, it is so easy for us to get distracted and forget to take time for ourselves. Whether it is a physical or mental health day, don’t be afraid to take a day off to focus on YOU and your happiness. It is better to fall behind one day then to have a breakdown and have to quit your job or drop out of school.
There are so many easy exercises that you can begin to implement into your daily life to increase your mindfulness. Start with your breathing. Take time to do deep breathing exercises throughout your day to bring your mind and soul back to the present moment. Feel your breath as it moves in and out of your body and take note to how you feel with each breath. Do this sitting, standing, and laying down and pick which one feels best. Learn how to do it discretely so you can do it anytime you may need.
Listen. Every hour, take a five minute break where you do nothing but listen. Turn off your mouth and turn on your ears. Open yourself to the activity and life that is happening around you. Pay attention to what people are saying and doing. Embrace the sound around you and take it all in.
Make a list of everything that makes you smile throughout the day. Take note when someone says a funny joke, gives you a compliment, or does anything that gets you to show a smile. Then at the end of the day, look at your list. Spend time recalling each of these moments. Appreciate the love that people show you and admire the way you take in their company and react to their actions.
Make a list of all the times that you get annoyed or frustrated throughout your day. Read them through later that night and make mental notes on how each interaction made you feel. Practice deep breathing during this to make sure you do not get angry or frustrated again. Think of simple ways you can deal with these problems if they ever happen again.
Mindfulness meditation for anxiety
Mindfulness meditation has been shown to show great signs of improvement in anxiety. It helps teach patience, which is key in relaxing and living in the moment. In order to reduce anxiety, a person needs to come to terms with their illness and realize it is a long battle upwards. Recovering from anxiety takes a lot of time and patience, and mindfulness can help increase that.
Mindfulness meditation also teaches and creates balance in the body. It brings all realms of the body to equal balance and stability. It can transport equilibrium throughout the body of a person suffering from anxiety. An imbalance in the body can be what is preventing a person with anxiety from getting better.
Honesty in recovery
Nothing is more important than honesty in recovery. A person who is trying to recover from anything needs to be honest with themselves, their loved ones, and their doctors. A person recovering from an eating disorder needs to be honest, because if they are not, their illness can destroy their organs and kill them from starvation. Likewise, a gambling addict needs to be honest because if not, they may never be able to financially recover. A drug addict needs to be honest or their addiction may kill them due to an overdose.
When a person trying to recover from an addiction, illness, or any type of toxic lifestyle practice, they will try to hide their problem. They will be ashamed and will not want anyone to know. As a supporter, you need to let the individual going through recovery that it’s not embarrassing, and it’s not something to be ashamed of.
Meditation for addicts
Mindfulness meditation can also benefit the recovering addict. It teaches focus and discipline, which is key in drug and alcohol recovery. An addict will have to learn techniques and practices that they can use when they have the urge to use a dangerous substance. These activities can be physical such as going on a run or bike ride, or mental such as doing a puzzle or reading a book.
Holistic care can be a major key in the recovery of those who abuse dangerous substances. It can include herbal remedies, meditating, using essential oils, massage, acupuncture, and much more. When holistic care is used in combination with conventional medicine, the addict can have a much more comfortable and quicker recovery process.