Updated: Jun 1
The practice of mindfulness intentionally focuses your awareness on the present moment without interpretations or judgment. Practicing mindfulness allows us to relax both the body and the mind, reducing stress. Mindfulness has been found to have many positive effects, improving a person's physical and mental health. Mindfulness has also increased cognitive intelligence, enhanced concentration, and improved self-control. Make mindfulness a part of your life by practicing these four simple steps, focus on one thing at a time, step away from technology, practice mindfulness exercises, and set aside time for deep reflection.
Focus on one thing at a time:
Our daily lives can become incredibly stressful and overwhelming. We are constantly on the move juggling different tasks, attempting to get everything done before the day comes to an end. When you feel stuck in the trenches with no way out, take a deep breath and break tasks down into one step at a time. It is essential to recognize when you begin to feel overwhelmed, then relax and redirect your mind, focusing on the present moment. Once you have grounded your awareness, you can start enjoying the present and complete tasks with ease.
This process is referred to as One Mindfulness, and its purpose is to train our brains to focus on one thing at a time, slowly breaking down the habits ingrained in us. For example, we are constantly multitasking, struggling to get everything done on time without focusing on what we are doing. Practicing One mindfulness allowed us to be present and aware, strengthening our concentration, improving productivity, and reducing stress.
2. Step away from technology:
A second way to introduce mindfulness into your life and ease anxiety is by unplugging from technology. Technology is a part of our daily lives, and most of our waking hours are immersed in technology in some way. We are all guilty of wasting hours scrolling on our phones or working on our computers until 1 a.m. While technology has immeasurable benefits, some disadvantages lead to our detriment. The excessive use of technology disrupts sleep, hinders productivity, increases stress levels, and decreases awareness.
Technology takes us away from the current moment and is often a catalyst for stress and anxiety. We constantly compare ourselves and our lives to choreographed depictions we see on a screen. This causes us to pass judgment on ourselves and become stressed over trivial things. By unplugging and stepping away from technology regularly, we focus on what is happening around us and truly take in the present moment.
3. Practice mindfulness exercises:
In addition to focusing on one task at a time and stepping away from technology, you can practice mindfulness by completing mindfulness exercises. Mindfulness exercises are different from traditional forms of exercise like aerobics or cardio. Mindfulness exercises aim to become grounded within reality, developing a heightened sense of your body and the atmosphere around you. The most commonly practiced mindfulness exercise is meditation. During meditation, the mind focuses on a specific object, thought, or action, helping to ease your mind of stress and anxiety. Meditation can be practiced in solitude or with a mediator to guide you through the experience.
4. Take time to reflect at the end of each day:
Mindfulness evokes emotions that we need to take time to process and understand without the influence of judgment. Setting aside time to reflect in a quiet and safe space allows us to develop a stronger connection within ourselves and understand the world around us. Through mindfulness, we can reflect on our experiences and emotions with clarity, dissolving the fog that biases and preconceived notions create.
Reflection can be practiced in many different ways. You can sit with your thoughts, journal, or even create art. The way a person chooses to practice reflecting is not what's important. What matters is the value they receive from it. While most people who practice mindfulness decide to reflect on their emotions and experiences at the end of the day, others enjoy reflecting on the moment, documenting the feelings that arise during different incidents. The steps you chose to take on your journey to mindfulness and how you chose to reflect on them are not necessary. Mindfulness is about connecting the mind and body while strengthening your awareness of the world.
Chyann Klahs is a recent graduate with dual bachelor's degree in Communication and Journalism. She has a passion for writing articles and poetry that leaves a lasting impact. Her goal is to educate and empower others through her writing and promote change!
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