Ten Ways To Bring Mindfulness Into Everyday Life

Ten Ways To Bring Mindfulness Into Everyday Life

By Dr. Elise Bialylew

Guest eriter for Wake Up World

Many people think that meditation is a practice which involves emptying your mind of thoughts. This misconception can leave beginners feeling like ‘bad’ meditators. Mindfulness meditation is not about emptying the mind, but rather stabilising our attention and training our minds to be more focused, effective and skillful in everyday life. You can bring mindfulness to everyday activities simply by tuning in to your senses which helps you to actually be present to what you are doing, rather than lost in thinking.

Here are ten steps to bring mindfulness into your daily life.

1. Be mindful in conversation

Use listening as a meditation. Pay attention to the whole person speaking. Notice the sound and rhythm of their voice and their facial expressions. Notice your mind drifting off into fantasy or thinking whilst the person is speaking. Notice your urge to speak, is it easier for you to listen or talk?

2. Be mindful when eating

Notice the food on your plate, pay attention to colours, shapes and smells. Bring awareness to the sensation of chewing and the flavours, textures and temperatures in your mouth. Notice any urge to eat quickly or swallow your food without chewing it completely. Be aware of the mind being hijacked from the experience of eating and gently bring it back to the food.

3. Be mindful in supermarket queues

Tune in to the body. Notice your feet on the ground, the sounds, and your breath. Check in with how you are feeling, notice any irritation or impatience in the body and using the breath, see if you can let it go.

4. Be mindful on social media

Before checking in to facebook or twitter, bring a conscious intention to the amount of time you are intending to spend engaging on social media. Notice the urge to keep checking and scrolling through the feed. Notice any emotions that arise as you experience other peoples lives.

5. Be mindful while driving

Notice your hands on the wheel, feel your posture. Notice any tension in the body and actively relax the body, let your shoulders be soft, perhaps turn off the radio and be in silence. Notice any urges to use your phone.

6. Be mindful in confrontation

Tune in to the body, notice any sensations that come with anger or fear as you are in a difficult conversation: heat, tightness, a rapid heart beat? Notice your urge to defend or react in some way. Anchor your attention to sensations in the body as you negotiate.

7. Be mindful at the gym

Tune in to the sensations of your body while exercising. Notice the kind of thoughts that arise when you are exerting yourself. Take a moment to be grateful for the capacity of your body to so miraculously function.

8. Be mindful in bed

So many people use digital technology, whether laptops or phones in bed. Phones are commonly used as alarm clocks these days. Notice how you relate to technology in the bedroom and whether this impacts on your ability to fall asleep.

9. Be mindful in the shower

Choosing something you do regularly each day can be a helpful way to remember to practise mindfulness. Tune in to the sensations of water and temperature on your skin. Notice when your mind wanders off and gently bring it back to the sensations of your body.

10. Be mindful when walking

These days we often do many things while walking – we listen to ipods, text message, speak on our phones. Try using walking as a mindful practice. Feel your feet making contact with the ground. Notice what it feels like to walk a little slower if you’re not actually in a rush. Take in your surroundings, the smells, the colours, the sounds. Use mindful walking between meetings to create a moment of mindfulness in your day.

Learn more

To learn how to find more focus, calm and contentment in everyday life and make a positive impact in the world, sign up to Mindful in May. You’ll receive an online mindfulness program including audio meditations and interviews with global experts in wellbeing.

Visit www.mindfulinmay.org for more information.

About the author:

Dr Elise Bialylew

Dr. Elise Bialylew is the founder of Mindful in May, an online global mindfulness campaign that’s taught thousands of people around the world to meditate, while raising funds to build clean water wells in the developing world. An out-of-the-box thinker, a doctor trained in psychiatry, and a mindfulness meditation teacher, Elise brings her diverse training to coach people around the world, helping them reach their full potential at the Mind Life Project. Her work has been featured in the Huffington Post, New York Times, and on National Australian Television.

Visit www.MindfulInMay.org for more information.

If you've ever found value in our articles, we'd greatly appreciate your support by purchasing Mindful Meditation Techniques for Kids - A Practical Guide for Adults to Empower Kids with the Gift of Inner Peace and Resilience for Life.

In the spirit of mindfulness, we encourage you to choose the paperback version. Delve into its pages away from screen glare and notifications, allowing yourself to fully immerse in the transformative practices within. The physical book enriches the learning process and serves as a tangible commitment to mindfulness, easily shared among family and friends.

Over the past few years, Wake Up World has faced significant online censorship, impacting our financial ability to stay online. Instead of soliciting donations, we're exploring win-win solutions with our readers to remain financially viable. Moving into book publishing, we hope to secure ongoing funds to continue our mission. With over 8,500 articles published in the past 13 years, we are committed to keeping our content free and accessible to everyone, without resorting to a paywall.