6 Tips to Help You Practice Mindfulness Daily

When you make an effort to be mentally present throughout the day, you’ll be less stressed overall. You’ll also be more aware of your own thoughts and able to make a conscious effort to avoid unhelpful behaviors. Here are six simple ways to practice mindfulness every day.

1. Start The Day Off Right

If you’re someone who likes to jump out of bed and immediately get started with your day, try slowing down for a few minutes. Checking in with yourself is a good start: evaluate how you feel mentally and physically. If you like to get moving when you first wake up, try taking a walk where you make an effort to notice your surroundings.

2. Stay In Touch With Your Senses

If you’re like many people, you often get caught up in worries or future planning to the point that you don’t feel present in your daily life. One way to stay grounded is to pay attention to your senses.

This isn’t too hard to do. If you’re cooking something, focus on the aroma in the kitchen. If you’re exercising, focus on how your body feels throughout your workout. You can even pay attention to the feel of the soap and water as you wash your face in the morning. Some people periodically use the “5-4-3-2-1 technique.” This is where you focus on five things you see, four things you hear, three things you smell, two things you touch, and one thing you taste.

3. Practice Mindful Breathing

This is a great strategy because you can do it pretty much anywhere. “Mindful breathing” simply involves focusing on your breath while you breathe in and out. How you focus is up to you. You might choose to watch the rise and fall of your chest or belly or feel the sensation of the air itself.

Just like other forms of mindfulness, this one might take some practice! It’s easy to let your mind wander elsewhere. But the more you practice staying focused on the present, the easier it will get.

4. Try Meditation

For some people, meditation is the best form of mindfulness. If you tend to have trouble focusing on your own, you might enjoy guided meditations. These meditations involve listening to a speaker to help guide your thoughts. Alternatively, you can try self-guided meditation. With this strategy, you can choose your meditation. You might choose a focal point in a room, meditate on things you’re grateful for, or just take a moment to check in with your body.

5. Use Mindful Listening

One of the tricks to mindfulness is trying to be consistently present. This is harder than it sounds! But mindful listening can help you both be more mindful and have more meaningful relationships. To use this technique, make an effort to focus completely on what someone is saying. Avoid the impulse to start formulating a response in your head while someone is talking. And of course, part of mindful listening is putting away phones, tablets, and other electronic devices to focus on the conversation you’re having. You might notice your mind start to wander. If this happens, try to gently bring your focus back (without judging yourself too harshly!).

6. Notice Your Thoughts

For many people, rumination, or prolonged focus on negative thoughts or events, can lead to unhappiness. If you regularly practice mindfulness, you may have an easier time avoiding rumination and remaining in the present. The first step toward doing that is noticing your thoughts.

The key here is to simply act as though you’re observing your thoughts, almost as if you’re watching a cloud drift by. Don’t judge yourself for the thoughts you experience. As you continue to observe thoughts, you might pay attention to how often your thoughts are negative. If this is a regular occurrence, work on gently redirecting your thoughts. Often, the best way to do this is to focus on where you currently are or what you’re currently doing.

Closing Thoughts

With these tips and strategies, you should be well-equipped to move mindfully through the day. Of course, these aren’t the only strategies; anything that helps you feel present in the moment is a great start.

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