Mindfulness – what’s the story?

 

Ok so we’ve heard the word “mindfulness” a lot recently – but what exactly is it and how do you practise it?

 

In a nutshell, mindfulness is about being “fully present” – google “mindfulness and the definition that comes up is:

  1. the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something.
    “their mindfulness of the wider cinematic tradition”
  2. a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.

OK, so far so good, but what does that mean in reality? Well essentially it means that you are fully aware of where you are and what you are doing but the idea is that you are being “mindful” of your thoughts, emotions and senses to help you not get overwhelmed or have a strong reaction to anything that comes your way.

So, how do you practise it and what are the benefits?

The good news is you can practise it anywhere and you don’t need any equipment. Sit down and focus on your breathing in and out and try not to let your attention wander. You are trying to clear your mind and focus on being “in the present” – if you feel your mind going elsewhere, refocus again on your breathing. Try doing this for 5 minutes at first.

And why exactly should we be doing this? Well, we’ll give you our number one reason: it reduces stress and that is definitely a good thing. There are also other rumoured benefits including improved concentration and mental clarity.

In a world where we live busy, hectic, fast-paced lives, it’s easy for us to sometimes feel overwhelmed and so why not try mindfulness and take 5 minutes to yourself during the day – it could help you get to your glow!

Tip: if you’re not into the whole meditating thing but still want to give the whole mindfulness thing a try, buy yourself a colouring book (there are some great ones made for adults now!) and spend some time colouring in – it’s a good way to relax and help clear your mind.

 

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Photo by Lesly Juarez on Unsplash