Mindfulness is choosing to be present in the moment, without judgement. It is about being aware of what you’re feeling and what you’re doing as you do it. If you’re anything like me you are too busy to slow down and notice how you’re feeling or what you’re thinking. There is always so much to do.
Mindfulness has become a buzz word, being mentioned more and more. I first read about mindfulness in the book The pursuit of happiness (my review). I didn’t think anything more about it until my sister went on a course and told me she found it beneficial. Still I didn’t think more about it until my work put on a 6 week mindfulness course and I thought why not?
I felt timid and vulnerable going into a dim room with strangers to sit in silence with my eyes shut. But it was refreshing. Slowing down for an hour helped clear my mind so I went home feeling refreshed and reinvigorated. My course was an introduction to mindfulness so was shorter than many courses. It was 1 hour a week for six weeks and covered
What is mindfulness?
Thoughts are not facts.
Different meditation techniques
Link between the mind and body including how you can interrupt the link
Learning to meditate is the key thing I took away from the course. The key principles of meditation is there is no right or wrong way and it is normal for your mind to wander. When your mind wanders, because it will, acknowledge it and focus on the meditation again.
On the course I learnt I prefer guided meditations as they help focus my thoughts. I’ve used meditations on YouTube and tried a few apps. I now subscribe to Calm because I like their range of meditations and courses e.g. 7 days of focus. I do the 10 minute Daily Calm track as soon as I wake up (using earplugs so I don’t disturb anyone). I plan to meditate in the morning as soon as I wake up. However, I admit the main reason I subscribed is because I like their sleep stories. I go to sleep on my left side and put one ear plug in my right ear. I’m usually asleep before the end of the story and remove the earplug at some point during the night. I have tried a speaker in my pillow but found it uncomfortable to sleep on. And yes I’ve dropped my phone a few times so the glass on my phone is fairly damaged!
I’ve found meditation very beneficial, and after doing it most days for six months I would miss it if I stopped. Through the meditation I’ve become more aware of thoughts and actions; more mindful. Yes, I still get grumpy and shout but it is less often and I’m getting better at thinking “I just shouted, did I mean to?” I’ve noticed when I get grumpy with the children it often has more to do with how I feel than what they’ve done (or not done). Now I’m much better at changing my behaviour so I can encourage them to take action instead of nagging. This means we are a calmer house.
Do you practice mindfulness? Do you practice meditation regularly? What are your tips?
I’m a working mum who understand how you feel. I work full time after making a career change a few years ago. My children do lots of activities which require lifts, and we're renovating an old care home into our family home. I share what I learn to make it easier for you.