Practicing mindfulness is something that can help us to calm our minds and thoughts in this busy world we live in. Mindfulness is something so simple yet it can be so difficult just because our minds are constantly busy with so much that is going on in our lives. I will talk about 6 simple mindfulness activities I use to help me to be present at the moment and relax my mind.
Mindfulness is such an easy and important way to practice self-care and to take care of your mental health.
First, let’s look at what mindfulness is.
What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is a mental state in which you are focused on the present moment while acknowledging and accepting your feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations in that exact moment, without giving any meaning or judgment to what you are acknowledging.
Why should you practice mindfulness?
Mindfulness can help you to enjoy life more and be more satisfied in life. It can help you to fully engage in your daily activities and focus on the present instead of constantly stressing about the future or focusing on regrets from your past.
It can help you engage better with others as it can help you to listen better and focus on the person or people you are with at that moment.
Mindfulness has many benefits for your physical and mental health. Some of these are stress relief, relieve gastrointestinal difficulties, lower blood pressure, improve sleep, help with eating disorders, anxiety disorders, and obsessive-compulsive disorders.
Now let’s dive into the simple activities I use on my mindfulness journey.
1 Breathing exercises
Breathing exercises can be as simple as just focusing on your breath. Be aware of the way your chest is moving when you take a breath and when you’re breathing out.
Try to focus on nothing else. You can also just calmly say the words breathe in, breathe out as you breathe in and out.
Breathing exercises can help you calm your mind as you are allowing your mind to take a break from all the thoughts you have regularly.
This is a simple form of mindfulness.
I use the calm app to help me with my breathing exercise, being guided through it can be very helpful.
Drawing has a therapeutic and relaxing effect on our minds. Try drawing and focusing on nothing else than what you’re drawing.
You can try to draw something specific or color a picture that you like. You can also doodle and draw whatever you feel like at the moment, as long as you are trying to be focused on that alone and allow your mind to be in the moment. Bring out the creativity inside of you.
You can use a coloring book or just a blank paper and doodle away.
Journaling can help you to be in the moment, by writing what you are thinking at that moment.
As I mentioned earlier, mindfulness is not about judgment and understanding what you are acknowledging. So, try to remember that when you are mindfully journaling. Just write what you are feeling or thinking and just clear your mind.
Focus on what is going on in that moment whether it makes sense or not. Your journal should be a place where you are free to write whatever you feel or think, without any judgment.
4 Be aware of your surroundings
Sit on your balcony, in a park, your backyard, or even somewhere in your house and focus on what you can hear, see, feel or smell.
Just be in the moment, be present and pause your mind, give your mind a break, and focus on whatever is going on around you. Listen to the leaves in the trees, the cars honking, children playing, dogs barking, or the water of the beach.
Whatever it is, just live in the moment and take it all in.
5 Acknowledge your feelings
Being aware of what you are feeling is another way of being mindful. It’s important to acknowledge what you are feeling at the moment. This is another thing I like using the calm app for. It has a feature where you can choose an emoji to express your feeling and make notes of that moment.
You can also place a reminder in the app to do this at least once a day. By doing this you can see what you’re feeling at what times and accept what you’re feeling.
But even without the app, you can just write down in your notebook or journal, maybe every night or morning, how you’re feeling and what kind of sensations are going through you. Be fully aware of your mental state and be in the moment.
6 Focus on what you are doing at that moment
Whether it is working, or cleaning your house or exercising, try doing one thing at the time and focus on that one thing.
Don’t do three things at once because you’re ‘so good at multitasking’. But instead, finish one task while being focused before focusing on another one. Enjoy whatever you are doing.
These are six simple mindfulness activities I use to help me to be more mindful and calm my mind, I hope they can help you too.
Practicing mindfulness can sometimes be difficult, because you are very used to be constantly thinking about things, worrying about what we need to do or things we need to finish. So, your mind might wander off when you are trying to do some mindfulness activities. That is a-ok because you need to practice.
You won’t be all focused after practicing these activities for just one time. No, give it time, and keep practicing. It might be that you are working and trying to be mindful, but something important pops up in your head, make a note to address that topic later and move on, and let it go for that moment.
I hope this blog was useful to you. If you have any other tips on practicing mindfulness, feel free to leave them in the comments.