#MindfulMarch | Simple Ways To Incorporate Mindfulness Into Your Daily Routine
Hi again! It’s week two of #MindfulMarch and today we’ll be exploring simple ways to incorporate mindfulness into your daily routine. I understand that we’re all busy. We have jobs to go to, dogs to walk, dinner to burn, children to feed, and a couple of downward dogs to squeeze in between everything, for good measure. Our lives have become chaotic at best. Society celebrates us for how fast we go, for how much we can cram into a day, how much “hustle” we have in us. We’re valued for our productivity and efficiency.
I would like to go against the grain and tell you that the above is only true if you allow it to be. You are the master of your life, of your calendar, of your commitments. You have the right to draw the line when you’ve reached your limit and to say no, politely, to the things that no longer benefit you. You don’t need to drink multiple cups of coffee a day and you don’t need to drive yourself thin, just to make sure that everyone else’s needs and agendas are met. Instead, here are some ways to practice mindfulness in the most simple and accessible ways, right where you are, because let’s be serious, we can’t all take off to a yoga retreat or take a vacation every time life becomes too much.
There’s a well known and loved saying that goes like this “a Sunday well spent brings a week of content”. Well, if you asked me, a week well planned brings a week of content. That’s the reason why I dedicate a few hours every Sunday to set myself up for the week ahead. This habit has ensured that my days have a focus and that all of the little everyday elements are prepped in advance so I don’t need to worry about them throughout the week. Here’s the link to a past newsletter where I shared exactly what my Sunday planning looks like. It honestly has helped me eliminate those daily stressful moments (like, what the heck are we eating for dinner?!) and allows me the mental space necessary to be more mindful and focus on the things that really matter to me, like writing.
Take a deep breath.
There are times when things become too much for me. Too many deadlines. Too many expectations (mostly from me). Too many things on the list. Not enough time in the day. Guilt. Shame. I’ve learned that when these moments come, I need to take a moment and find my breath. I learned a quick meditation that helps me come back to the present moment. Do it with me? If you have multiple tabs open, close them all. If your space is a mess, move somewhere that is tidy. Sit down and place a hand on your heart and the other on your abdomen. Breathe deeply. Now, do the following. Without moving, in your head, name five things you can see, four things you can hear, three things you can smell, two things you can touch and one you can taste. Really deepen your senses and your breath. This exercise will give you the shift in perspective needed to pause and recollect yourself.
Tend to your space.
Taking care of your physical space can do wonders for your mental space. Something as simple as tidying up the couch, putting the throw blankets in their basket, washing the dishes in the sink, watering the plants, rolling up the blinds and opening a window or lighting a candle can create an ambiance where you feel calm and safe.
Eliminate unnecessary distractions.
Whether you work from an office or from home, distractions are everywhere, from that noisy coworker to the snacks in the fridge. Worse yet, we have distractions at our fingertips, on our phones. We’re constantly one scroll away from being lost in curated feeds and sucked into watching videos. If you know there’s something important you need to do, or something more pressing that needs your attention, learn to distance yourself from distractions and shift your attention onto the things at hand. This allows you to create more mindful habits and create more meaningful work. I wrote an article a little while ago about how comparison is the thief of focus, and I’ll include that here for you to read, because I think it’s relevant to our discussion.
What are some ways that you practice mindfulness in your own day to day life? I would love to know! Share your answer with me in the comments below or feel free to connect on Instagram or Twitter. Use the hashtag #MindfulMarch, so I can easily see your posts, share them, answer any questions you might have and keep the conversation going.
And also, if you checked out my newsletter link above and you’d be interested in receiving something similar in your inbox every Sunday, you can sign up here.
Until next time,