Let's talk about mindfulness.
So you've come to read about mindfulness? Great I will be sure to keep it interesting for you.
I've been saying it all through lockdown, about the importance of mindfulness. Even before that, when I wasn't on Instagram, before our little family even existed in your world. I've been opened up to the world of mindfulness for around 5 years now and it has honestly changed my life.
This is for anyone, if you are human - than mindfulness can help you in so many ways. I'm not going to slap a title and say that this benefits certain categories of people more than others, because the fact is we're all capable of learning from it and also gaining from it.
"Practicing mindfulness meditation can be a great way to manage stress and boost compassion, focus, empathy, patience, energy, and ultimately, happiness."
I know just how hard times have been on late, for everyone - I don't really think that these recent events and changes in our lives have not affected anyone in some sort of small way, it's really whacked everyone out of their normal routine. As a HUGE sufferer of Mental Health, routine is something I need to continually keep in place. One thing I kept myself in routine during lockdown with was practicing mindfulness. How you ask? Well there are MANY WAYS in which you can practice mindfulness, I'll list some of my favourite and simple ones below. - You can do guided meditation - You can meditate alone - You can practice things like 'The Body Scan' / '5 Senses' - You can practice Yoga - You can find a comfy place and just focus on your breathing.
Let's talk about GUIDED MEDITATION FIRST....
Guided meditation is something that is so simple, you can grab yourself a pair of headphones and even just use your phone - I find wearing headphones during meditation really helps you cancel out any other noise but also is better than a speaker. Now where can you find Guided Meditation? Youtube, Podcasts, APPS - there are so many opportunities all over the internet which are easily accessible and free for most anyone to use. It's as simple as searching Guided Meditation - and whichever thing you may want help with, wether it's mental health, anxiety, sleep, depression, calming an overactive mind - you name it and there is something out there. Now a fun fact for you, I have to have a male voice to really get into guided meditation - you might find it easier with a women. Some voices also annoy me and there are some I find who I can really get into. It's about shopping around, finding what works for you. The great thing is you can do some that are as short as ten minutes long, or even twenty minutes and then some can go up for an hour or more. Guided meditation is my thing, I love it. It gives me time to switch off and run away from the kids, or my partner, or just when I'm feeling super anxious and need to take a moment for myself.
Meditate alone/Find a spot and focus on your breathing
My favourite place to meditate and down by the beach, because what I like to do when I meditate alone is really crack into my five senses and focus on my breathing. I find a comfortable place to sit and I let my senses and breathing take over me for a while. But you can honestly meditate anywhere you are comfortable find yourself a place to sit, and just focus on your breathing for five minutes. If your mind does a cheeky wander off and it will, you just focus back to inhaling in and out. I in no way, have a quiet mind so I am constantly having to bring myself back to my attention of breathing. It's okay for it to do this, don't get frustrated.
Practicing your 5 senses
To give you an example.... of how to use your 5 senses whilst practicing mindfulness. SMELL: The smell of the seaweed HEAR: The sound of the waves crashing on the sand. TOUCH: The sand between my toes SEE: The horizon between the sky and ocean. TASTE: usually a little trickier but a good one is to focus on your saliva as weird as that sounds. Now it's great to start off by noticing each of them, the next best thing to do is get descriptive. HEAR: I can hear the sound of the waves crashing back and forth on the sand, whilst I listen closely I can imagine the waves climbing over one and another creating a foam towards where it meets the sand. ( I am in no way a poet, but hey I give it a go - and its about finding what works for you).
Now this is where you'll hear about how terrible I am at a Yoga - I was "too busy" for years, but we all know that nobody is never too busy and we can take just 5 minutes to accomplish a simple act of mindfulness. , I do not have strength, balance nor flexibility now and this has been something I have just started doing again - so I don't have a lot of answers here, but together we can build up. I used to practice simple Yoga, but now I am really trying to grow my strength up again postpartum. I've just been researching different yoga positions, now I have a button on my TV which takes me straight to YouTube and if you've seen my television on my instagram than you know it's a pretty decent size. But size doesn't always matter, does it ladies.... Okay back to getting serious now. Youtube is a great place for beginners to start! Just type in beginner Yoga, even be more descriptive I have been doing a lot of postpartum yoga lately.