You’ve probably heard people talk about being mindful and the positive impact it can have on us. But what is mindfulness? What are the benefits of mindfulness and how can the practice of mindfulness help you as a mom? Read on to find out!
The Meaning of Mindfulness
Do you ever just need to stop the rush and craziness of the day?
Mindfulness is the opportunity to pause and to be fully present in the moment without distraction, emotion or concerns pulling your mind in another direction.
Did you know that you can give yourself the gift of mindfulness and all its benefits in as little time as 2-5 minutes? And, you can do it informally almost anywhere with no equipment or special accessories required!
First Step to Mindfulness
Let’s start by thinking of the times in our day that we can find 2-5 minutes to spare…
- Waiting in the school carline
- Waiting in the grocery check-out line
- During a lunch break
- While watching your children’s extra-curricular activities
- In the morning when you first awake
- In the evening when you get into bed
- During your shower/bath
- While brushing your teeth
- Playing with your kids!
You get the idea, finding 2-5 minutes in your day is doable!
Benefits of Practice
There are numerous benefits to practicing mindfulness and for busy moms like us, these benefits are priceless.
Increasing mental clarity, decreasing stress, increasing positive thoughts and improving sleep are just a few of the benefits that we can experience by infusing a little mindfulness practice in our day.
As moms we are so busy taking care of others that we often put our own care on the back burner. Lack of sleep and increased stress easily creep up on us when we don’t pay attention to our own daily routines and needs. Our mind is a powerful force and our thoughts can dictate how we feel and impact our mood or outlook. Carving out as little as 2-5 minutes of our day is a small commitment that will, literally, improve our overall health and well being.
Mindfulness Meditation Practice
Think of it like this…as you do any task or activity in your day, devote 100% of your thoughts and focus to that task or activity. Notice where you are and how you are engaging in the task or activity. Think of all of your senses and take notice of them, are there smells associated with what you are doing? Is there something you are touching or feeling? Is there a sound in the background that you notice? Do you see something new, interesting, or beautiful? What’s beautiful or interesting about it and why?
Think about every aspect of what is around you and replace any distracting thoughts or negative judgements with your focus on what you are doing in the current moment. If your mind wanders (and it will!), acknowledge it and bring it back to focus on the moment. Mindfulness takes practice – over time you will get better at it!
Breathing is another way to practice mindfulness. Simply take a few deep breaths and focus on feeling the air coming in through your nose, filling your lungs and going out through your mouth. Just be in the moment with your breath and let go of the multi-tasking mentality for a few short moments!
Breathing is a quick and easy way to pause and refocus throughout your day. Regularly taking just a few long, deep breaths may increase your oxygen intake, reduce tension and anxiety and lower blood pressure. All of these responses signal to our brain that it’s time for our mind and body to relax.
If you prefer to formally practice mindfulness, find a quiet and comfortable place to sit and try a short mindfulness guided meditation or just listen to some calming sounds or music. They are many wonderful apps you can use for guided mindfulness. Here are a few of our favorites:
Self Care: Breathing Exercises
Mindfulness in Daily Life
So, set that reminder on your phone and let’s invest 2-5 minutes of our day to help our minds and bodies focus, de-stress and cultivate positive thinking because We.Are.Worth.It!