Live Mindfully

What does it mean to live mindfully and how can mindful living help you? Simply put, when you pay attention to the present moment, you are living mindfully. When you worry about the future or fixate on the past, you are not living mindfully. In this moment, take a deep breath, very slowly exhale, and notice what happens in your body as you do this....

As you take a walk, you can focus on the sounds around you: the leaves rustling in the wind, dogs barking, cars and buses driving by, people talking to one another. You can notice the colors: the blue sky and formation of the clouds, green grass, brown leaves on the ground and green in the trees, colors of signs, birds flying, fences and homes. While washing dishes, you can focus on the sound of the water running, the feel of the water on your hands, the slipperiness of the dishes in the soapy water, and how your feet feel on the floor. As you cook, you can pay attention to the sounds in the kitchen and the smells from the foods. These are all external experiences: things happening around you, your interactions with your environment and other people. If you practice noticing your external experiences with your senses, you can remain better grounded in the here and now, and are less likely to get swept away by the storms of your internal experiences. Take another deep breath, slow exhale, and notice....

As you eat breakfast, you can focus on your thoughts: the content of your thoughts, which thoughts repeat themselves, which thoughts are new, whether or not your thoughts are helpful or unhelpful. As you are having a conversation with a friend or are watching a movie, you can notice your emotions as they come and go, or you can notice how your body feels when you are laughing at something, listening intently, or joining someone in their pain. This describes internal experience: your thoughts, emotions, and body sensations. Your internal experience is constantly shifting and changing like the weather, the tide, the rivers, and most elements in nature. When you learn to observe your internal experiences from a place of compassion and curiosity, you can often better cope with the ups and downs inherent in you, your relationships, and other aspects of your life. Take one more deep breath, slow exhale, and notice....

To live mindfully is to tune into yourself and what is around you, completely and in the moment, without judgement or agenda, but with openness to yourself and to your journey. Stop, breathe, and notice, living mindfully is a pathway to new experience....

Learn more about mindfulness:

http://www.helpguide.org/harvard/benefits-of-mindfulness.htm

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sarah-rudell-beach-/8-ways-to-teach-mindfulness-to-kids_b_5611721.html