Finding Mindfulness in a Time of Crisis
Mindful wakeup: Nothing Time
Take a couple long deep breaths; breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. In times like these it is important to take some time each day and set your aims and goals for the day. Be sure to check in with yourself during the day and return to your objectives and goals – ensuring a more positive and intentional mood throughout the day. We need to reteach ourselves that it is okay to be still and do nothing. Ensure to take time each day and just do nothing; if possible without phones, laptops or other distractions near you. Keep your mindful wakeup short but intentional – our brains respond positively to short bursts of mindfulness.
Eat With Awareness: Enjoy Every Bite
Try not to think about when you last ate or what time it is, and really listen to your body, not your thoughts. Eat when you are truly hungry – not just when you think it’s the “correct time” to eat. When you do sit down to eat – make sure to turn off distractions and be fully present in the moment. Pause for a moment; listening to your body before eating will help you not only enjoy the food more, but also reduce the likelihood of over eating.
Mindful Pause: Minute of Mindfulness
Take pauses throughout your day; slow your brain down. Be intentional about being in the moment rather than running on autopilot. Slowing down and waiting can be a big source of stress and frustration. We send emails or leave voicemails and want an immediate response. When one doesn’t come we tend to get agitated having to wait. Combat the stress and agitation by incorporating short minutes into your day to focus on you and breathing and nothing else.
Mindful Listening – Slow Down
Conference calls and video meetings have become the new normal. We often listen and participate in meetings without fully being present. We frequently get caught up in our own mind or already thinking about what we are going to say next. Next time you’re on a call try to slow down, be fully present in the conversation. Don’t just hear what people are saying; listen to what they are saying. Our current culture is focused on business and deadlines. Multi-tasking is something that has become the new norm – making it seem like a competition. How many things can we get done in one hour or one day? People often say they that they feel more productive when they multitask and get more things done; in reality it only drains one faster and makes us more susceptible to mistakes. Try instead to slow down, focus fully on one task at a time. Details will be noticed, mistakes will be fewer and tasks will be finished without feeling exhausted or tense.
Mindful Workout: Stimulate Your Mind
Whatever the physical activity—taking a walk, running, swimming, or lifting weights—instead of simply working out to burn calories or condition, focus on stimulating your mind as well. Instead of feeling busy and stressed, focus on the feelings of strength and accomplishment. Below is a quick 30 minute break:
- Warm Up (5 minutes) —Be present as your heartrate begins to rise
- Find your Tempo (10 minutes) Pick up the intensity
- Test yourself (10 minutes) – Really push yourself out of your comfort zone. Stimulate your mind by getting your blood pumping.
- Cool down (5 minutes) – Work on bringing your heartrate back down