Why Mindfulness isn’t just a Buzzword

Life moves fast, and sometimes we just need to take a moment to check in with ourselves and see how we’re doing (like you would with a friend!). Practicing mindfulness is a great way to rest, reset and regain balance. It’s simple, can be done anywhere, and offers a host of physical and emotional benefits. 

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is, by definition, “a mental state achieved by concentrating on the present moment, while calmly accepting the feelings and thoughts that come to you, used as a technique to help you relax”. 

Mindfulness isn’t necessarily synonymous with meditation (although it is a powerful way to practice mindfulness). It’s really just about fully engaging our attention on the “right here, right now”: taking a deep breath and being aware of your experiences, thoughts and feelings in the present moment, without passing judgment.  

With daily practice, mindfulness can lead to reduced stress and anxiety, improved focus and attention span, a stronger connection with others and enhanced well-being, to name but a few of its benefits. 

Practice Whenever, Wherever

Mindfulness isn’t a stuffy or formal affair; you can be mindful anytime, anywhere.  Clue into your senses, notice what’s around you, be curious about your feelings and breathe…it’s that easy. Here are some tips to get started: 

Focus on one thing at a time 

Whatever you happen to be doing , focus solely on that task and push out thoughts of anything else. Immerse yourself in the activity and just be present. 

Tune into your environment   

Open yourself up to noticing the sensations of the natural world around you: the wind rustling through the leaves, crickets chirping, warm sunshine on your skin. In doing so, you draw your attention to the present moment and allow your body to relax. 

Listen to your breathing 

You know that old adage about taking time to stop and smell the roses?

Stop and listen to your breathing. Be aware of each inhale and exhale. By shifting your focus to breathing, your thoughts slow down and your body calms down.  

What is Mindfulness Meditation?

Meditation is an effective way to practice mindfulness, although it does require a bit more time and practice. Here’s how:

  1. Sit comfortably. 
  2. With your eyes open or closed, clear your mind and focus solely on your breathing. 
  3. Once you can concentrate fully on your breathing, expand your focus to include surrounding sounds, body sensations, or your thoughts. Perhaps you are focussing on gratitude.
  4. As you notice these things, try not to pass judgment. If your mind starts to wander, return to your breath. 

Like with anything, mindfulness takes time and practice. Start off slow, with just a few minutes a day and work your way up from there. Once you incorporate moments of mindfulness into your daily routine, you’ll soon see that mindfulness isn’t just a buzzword, but rather an effective and easy way to improve physical, emotional and mental well-being.

Interested in learning more ways to enhance your health and wellness? Check out our article 5 reasons Why You Should Drink Kombucha Post-Workout.