Meditation has been getting a lot of good press recently. I’ve already written about how it has improved my own wellbeing here.
The benefits of living in the present moment – “mindfullness” – aren’t only achieved through sitting down with your legs crossed though. You can find little moments of peace anywhere through anything that allows you to focus on just what’s happening right now.
Here are 10 ways that I bring mindfullness into everyday life.
- Through creativity. Sitting and writing, and more recently colouring my lovely Mulga adult colouring book.
- Through unitasking. I find a lot of peace in routine tasks. When I’m washing dishes, I just wash the dishes and don’t try to also chat on the phone or plan a shopping list in my head. I watch the bubbles form, listen to the water, and focus on carefully stacking the clean plates in the drainer.
- Through waiting. When I wait for the bus, I just wait for the bus. I watch the traffic and people go by and feel the sun on my cheeks. I don’t check work emails, I don’t go on Facebook.
- Through individual sports like surfing, running and yoga. Surfing is a great one as it’s actually impossible to think about anything other than what you’re doing. Watching the waves, how they’re forming, where they’ll break and what other surfers in the water are doing.
- Through doing nothing. This one feels particularly luxurious and I love it. I sit down, put the phone down, turn off TVs and stereos and just watch what’s going on out the window. Try it now for just five minutes – it’s lovely.
- Through mindfull breathing. If I need a quick way to destress and bring myself back down to earth I will sit with my hands on my knees and take 10 deep, slow breaths. Ollie thinks I’m off my rocker when I do this but I don’t care. He should really try a few deep breaths rather than banging around the house when something riles him up!
- Through really listening. This one works great to find a bit of calm and space on a busy commute. I close my eyes and listen to the noises around me. I really listen, noticing not just the loud sounds but the quieter sounds too. The whir of an aircon unit, the beep of bus passes, the shuffling of feet and tapping of phones.
- Through walking. But rather than drifting off into a reverie, I try to stay in the moment, taking note of everything that I pass.
- Through music. I put on a favourite tune, lie back, close my eyes, clear my mind and really listen to all of the intricacies of the track. This one’s even more lovely after a couple of glasses of wine!
- And of course, finally, through meditation. I do aim to meditate at least three times per week to remind myself not to let the brain traffic completely take over.
How do you find moments of calm in everyday life?