June 10, 2020

When life is full of chaos, how can you remain calm? There’s a lot of pain, anger, and uncertainty in the world right now. Coming out of a global pandemic and experiencing social unrest, you may be feeling uneasy and affected by your environment. We honestly can’t think of a better time to be practicing mindfulness and exploring mindful living, especially as a form of self-care.

Simply put, mindful living is the ability to stay present despite your surroundings. This means being aware of your thoughts, feelings, and the physical sensations of your body moment to moment. But, why does that matter? Being able to stay present can help you remain calm amidst the chaos of life.

It’s been said that if you’re stuck in the past, you’re holding onto negative thoughts or experiences. And if you’re worrying about the future, you’re being driven by panic and fear. Only by being present can you be in full control of your thoughts, feelings, and actions. Noticing how you feel each moment allows you to be responsive rather than reactive, which means that you act thoughtfully, instead of having an emotional knee-jerk reaction.

Everyone can benefit from being more mindful, from how you focus on a task to how you speak to others. To take better care of yourself, and do your part to help make the world a better place, here are 4 things you can adopt today for more mindful living:

 

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1. Have An Open Mind

Mindfulness brings awareness into everything we do. But being aware doesn’t mean judging everything you do. You can notice your thoughts and feelings without judgement. This is a great starting point for more mindful living. To be able to notice your thoughts and feelings, and then move on to the next moment, means you’re living fully in the present.

 

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2. Think First

The proverbial saying “think before you speak” really shows the essence of mindfulness. When we let our emotions take over, we become reactive rather than responsive. We may say or do things we regret because we lashed out in anger instead of taking the time to think first. The motto think first, act second may help you think about how you’d like to respond in an appropriate way so that you don't regret your reactions later. This is a great way to practice mindful living where you not only consider the consequences of your actions for yourself, but also, for others.

 

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3. Listen More

Many times, when you listen to another person, you may be there physically, but you’re not really hearing them. You might be thinking about what you’re going to say next, or thinking about something else entirely, which means you aren’t fully present or focused on what the other person is saying. Next time you’re talking with a friend or loved one, challenge yourself to really hear their words, listen to what they are trying to express and focus your attention on them. Not only is this a great way to practice being more mindful, but it also shows others that you care and can enhance your personal relationships.

 

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4. Ditch Multi-Tasking

We live in a world that encourages multi-tasking and “having it all”. But juggling multiple things at once completely goes against living in the moment. Being in a chaotic mental state is the exact opposite of mindfulness. Not to mention the energy you waste by constantly switching through tasks and activities. Instead, get into the habit of devoting all your attention to one thing at a time, in order to fully be present. Focusing on one thing at a time can benefit your productivity and work habits, and your relationships with others, too.

 

Mindfulness is the ability to be present and fully engaged with whatever you’re doing in the moment. Being aware of your thoughts and feelings without judgment is one goal of mindful living. You can train yourself to be more present through practices like meditation, or by adopting mindful habits like thinking first, listening more, and focusing on one task at a time and giving it your undivided attention.

Are you interested in mindful living? What’s one way you can live more mindfully to care for yourself and others?

 


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