Our world is overwhelming. This is the third week of the last fifteen that a major shooting has been in the news as I write this.
Our fear of being alone, or missing out on something important makes us feel we need to sift through the constant, unprecedented deluge of information coming at us, even though we know most of it is just noise. We have less recovery time between events, and we’re getting less of the sleep we need to rejuvenate. It’s unsustainable, it’s exhausting, and it leads to a mindlessness that takes a toll on our personal and professional lives.
Mindfulness is the practice of becoming fully present in the moment. It is often confused with meditation. While meditation is one form of mindfulness practice, it’s not the only one. In today’s 24/7/365 world where stress is rampant, mindfulness has been scientifically proven to reduce stress, decrease health challenges, and increase focus, resulting in a better quality of home and work life.
Mindfulness has seven practices. For the next 7 weeks, I’m going to guide you thru these steps. I intend this series will educate, connect, and hopefully inspire you to try each of the seven for just two to five minutes on the next seven Mondays—and all week long.
Week 1 Mini-Practice: Centering
Centering is practicing the process of reconnecting to the still, small voice inside of you. Centering in partnership with breathing and small hand motions will bring you back to you.
Today, push yourself away from your desk for just two minutes. Yes, you can set a timer if it reduces your stress. Feel your breath enter through your nose and move through to your heart center, then exhale through your mouth. Do this three times. When was the last time you took a mindful breath?
Next time you are heading to a conversation that may be less than mindful, try centering. This practice, while simple, is not easy. The more you try it this week, the more you are likely to let go of mindless and become more mindful.