Mindfulness for Adults
Being mindful simply means being mentally present in whatever situation that you might be in. By being present we mean being ‘in the moment’- not thinking about something in the past or the future. It sounds simple enough but most people would be surprised by how much time they actually spend ‘thinking’ about things that have happened or even things that might happen.
So mindfulness is something that we can practise any time of the day! Here are 10 quick ways to practise mindfulness as a busy mum or teacher.
1. Breath Refocus. You can do this any time, especially good in times of stress. Simply close your eyes (not if you’re driving) and breathe deeply filling the bottom, middle and top of your lungs. Count each breath. Think only of the breath.
2. What am I doing? Do this one any time you remember. Just pause your mind in whatever you are doing and notice everything you can see, feel taste or smell.
3. Gratitude. Do this anytime of the day- especially good as you wake or drift off to sleep. List 5 things that you are truly grateful for. Feel the emotions that go along with gratitude as you recall these treasured things.
4. Small job- Do this whenever you have a small job to do, its good to practise the same job for a week. Choose a small job like the washing up and do it mindfully. Feel the temperature of the water, feel the soap suds, feel the surface of each dish or cup, feel the steam from the water, notice the temperature cool down in the water etc.
5. Kindness- place a special object ie a small Buddha statue/a butterfly sticker somewhere in your home. Each time you walk past and notice it perform a mindful act of kindness.
6. Looking-Do this when you have a spare 5 minutes. Pick up any object, things from nature like a pebble or a shell are great for this. Spend some time really looking at your object. Notice its texture, size, smell, special markings, shape and colour. After a few minutes close your eyes and see if you can see it in your minds eye.
7. Prayer of love- Do this when you have a spare 5 minutes, on waking is a nice way to start the day. Select a loved one and imagine them in your mind’s eye. Really see them. Now imagine that your heart is opening and that a lovely stream of green light is flowing from your heart and surrounding them. Keep going until they are completely surrounded in the green. Now say a prayer specific to them, wish them love, joy, peace and whatever else they need.
8. Noticing thoughts- Do this when you have a spare 5 minutes. Sit quietly with your eyes closed. Notice when you have a thought. Label it as ‘thought’. Whenever a thought comes label it and return to sitting quietly.