The Power of Mindfulness: Nurturing Awareness for a Harmonious Lifestyle

Mindfulness means creating awareness of our surroundings and daily activities as we get on with our lives. It means living every moment and feeling every feeling as it takes place, without judgment or thinking of the past or future repercussions of the same.

 

It means living in the present moment. Studies have shown that mindfulness aids in reducing stress, coping better with our problems/ailments, and increasing our positivity and self-esteem. By practising mindfulness techniques, we can find inner peace have a relaxed mind and can better deal with the continuous barrage of lemons that life throws at us.

 

Importance Of Mindfulness In Modern Society

We are living in highly stressful times. We have compartmentalized our lives in time slots and are working towards achieving our life goals like increased income, luxurious homes, better amenities like swanky cars, state-of-the-art high-end mobile phones/devices, hefty bank balances, a hoard of jewellery, etc. The stress/anxiety associated with this leads to a host of physical and mental ailments, that need to be addressed.


Generally speaking, you need to slow down, stop, and smell the roses, as the saying goes, which means practising mindfulness. Live and enjoy each moment as it happens, and be more aware of your surroundings. This does not mean that you are unaware of your surroundings while driving.

 

Benefits Of Practising Mindfulness

Mindfulness aids in lessening stress, reducing chronic pain, maintaining normal blood pressure, improving sleep and easing gastrointestinal issues. Someone once told me “If your software is okay, then you won’t have any trouble with your hardware” – that means if our mind is calm relaxed and focused, then the pain associated with any physical ailments will gradually subside. This is tried-tested and works.


A friend, working in a Corporation, was going through a recurring shoulder ache every three months so she had to be on medication but the underlying pain would not subside completely. She had to leave her job as the Company was not appreciating her long leaves. Her X-ray reports showed everything was normal. Since she had time on hand, she resumed painting, her passion, which she had neglected for years. As soon as she began painting, her shoulder ache disappeared !! Just like that !! We deduced that it was the stress and work pressure that had manifested as the pain, and now since she was her Boss, there was no stress, no urgency to meet any deadline and the pain disappeared and she was happy and in a better state of mind. She now sells her artwork online and through exhibitions, and she is glowing with happiness. Acute stress leads to many medical issues and therefore the lesser the stress, the better we feel.


With mindfulness, our focus increases and we can manage our life in the best way possible. Someone once said to me “You need to accept and make the best of your present situation.” Meaning that I have to accept and make the best of my present situation despite the stress that is associated with it, and also without worrying about what may happen in future or dwelling on what happened in the past.


Life is NOW…. After all who has seen tomorrow?? So why not improve and live a worthy life?

Some Simple Techniques Can Help You Become Mindful

Breathing

Sit In A Relaxed Position, In A Quiet Place, Close Your Eyes And Breathe… Deep Breaths And Calm Your Mind. Relax And Get Out Of The Stress At That Moment. If Your Thoughts Deviate, Coax Them Back To The Sense Of Your Breathing And Resume. This Takes Time And Patience But Can Be Done.​

Breathing

Sit In A Relaxed Position, In A Quiet Place, Close Your Eyes And Breathe… Deep Breaths And Calm Your Mind. Relax And Get Out Of The Stress At That Moment. If Your Thoughts Deviate, Coax Them Back To The Sense Of Your Breathing And Resume. This Takes Time And Patience But Can Be Done.​

Mindful Eating

Concentrate On Each Morsel You Eat And Feel Its Taste- Without Mechanically Eating And Watching TV. Be Thankful That You Have Food On Your Table When There Are Many Who Go Hungry. Be Aware Of The Effort Taken By The Cook To Make The Dish So Tasty And Compliment Them For The Same. Be Aware Of The New Crockery Set Taken Out Of The Cupboard And Appreciate It. Be Aware Of The Time Taken By Your Family members to Ensure That You Are Eating Properly And Refilling Your Plates As And When Required And Reward Them With A Smile. Live That Particular Moment To Its Fullest, That’s Mindfulness.​

Mindful Eating

Concentrate On Each Morsel You Eat And Feel Its Taste- Without Mechanically Eating And Watching TV. Be Thankful That You Have Food On Your Table When There Are Many Who Go Hungry. Be Aware Of The Effort Taken By The Cook To Make The Dish So Tasty And Compliment Them For The Same. Be Aware Of The New Crockery Set Taken Out Of The Cupboard And Appreciate It. Be Aware Of The Time Taken By Your Family members to Ensure That You Are Eating Properly And Refilling Your Plates As And When Required And Reward Them With A Smile. Live That Particular Moment To Its Fullest, That’s Mindfulness.​

Mindful Walking

Find A Quiet Place To Walk In So You Can Focus On Your Breathing, Pay Attention To Your Feelings, Become Aware Of The Sensations Of Your Feet As You Walk Slowly, Looking Down And In Case Your Mind Wanders, Bring It Back To The Present Activity. It Takes Time But You Will Be Able To Ace It With Practice.

Mindful Walking

Find A Quiet Place To Walk In So You Can Focus On Your Breathing, Pay Attention To Your Feelings, Become Aware Of The Sensations Of Your Feet As You Walk Slowly, Looking Down And In Case Your Mind Wanders, Bring It Back To The Present Activity. It Takes Time But You Will Be Able To Ace It With Practice.​

Body Scanning

To Do This You Need To Lie Down On The Bed And Feel The Sensations Going On In Each And Every Part Of Your Body, From Toe To Head. Is There A Tingling, Is There A Shiver, Is There A Pain, Concentrate On Each Part Of The Body, Beginning From The Toe Tips Till Your Head. This Will Help You In Distinguishing Your Feelings At That Present Moment, For Example, If You Are Stressed You May Have A Rapid Pulse Rate Or An Upset Stomach And You Can Therefore Try To Correct The Same.​

Body Scanning

To Do This You Need To Lie Down On The Bed And Feel The Sensations Going On In Each And Every Part Of Your Body, From Toe To Head. Is There A Tingling, Is There A Shiver, Is There A Pain, Concentrate On Each Part Of The Body, Beginning From The Toe Tips Till Your Head. This Will Help You In Distinguishing Your Feelings At That Present Moment, For Example, If You Are Stressed You May Have A Rapid Pulse Rate Or An Upset Stomach And You Can Therefore Try To Correct The Same.​

Mindful Listening

Maintain A Complete Span Of Concentration When Talking To Someone. Listen To Them Without Any Other Distractions Like Checking Your Mobile Or Looking All Around. Give Them Your Complete Attention So You Can Hear What They Have To Say, Maintain Eye Contact And Don’t Be Judgmental. This Will Help In Building Up Your Inter-Personal Relationships And You Will Learn Not To Be Prejudiced.​

Mindful Listening

Maintain A Complete Span Of Concentration When Talking To Someone. Listen To Them Without Any Other Distractions Like Checking Your Mobile Or Looking All Around. Give Them Your Complete Attention So You Can Hear What They Have To Say, Maintain Eye Contact And Don’t Be Judgmental. This Will Help In Building Up Your Inter-Personal Relationships And You Will Learn Not To Be Prejudiced.​

Meditation

Practise Meditation Daily As It Increases Your Focus And Makes Your Mind Stronger. This Technique Is An Age-Old Practice From The Time Of Lord Buddha Or Even Older, And Nowadays Even The Western Countries Are Following It. People Who Meditate Are Calmer And Stronger And More Apt At Acing Problems.​

Meditation

Practise Meditation Daily As It Increases Your Focus And Makes Your Mind Stronger. This Technique Is An Age-Old Practice From The Time Of Lord Buddha Or Even Older, And Nowadays Even The Western Countries Are Following It. People Who Meditate Are Calmer And Stronger And More Apt At Acing Problems.​

Essence of Mindfulness

The core of meditation involves the process of fostering mindfulness and cultivating inner tranquillity.


Imagine this:

On the way home from work, you are stuck in a traffic jam, that will take a long to clear. After banging the steering wheel, swearing and getting upset, look out of the window. What do you see??


A beautiful sunset .. whip out your mobile and capture the beauty. An old lady selling flowers .. buy some from her. After all, this means there will be some food for her today. A couple of children in the car beside you, counting the number of white cars: Smile and remember you did the same when you were their age. A melody of a song that you haven’t heard in years, from the car behind, and you hum along the same with a smile on your lips. The sight of a couple of puppies playing on the footpath and their squeals.


Just close your eyes and concentrate on your breathing, breathe in and breathe out, and on your emotions at that time, leaving behind the thoughts of anger/frustration, and soon the traffic jam will ease and you will resume your journey homeward. But the only difference is that you will be in a relaxed state of mind and won’t honk the rest of the way home. This is the awareness of your senses/surroundings. These are the small things that life is made of. Simple pleasures, to coin it in simpler terms, a sense of mindfulness. This is what is missing in life and needs to be brought back.


The level of concentration helps us to sharpen our brains and find effective solutions to our problems, whether at work or home. We become more active and can achieve more in life. There is this “happy feeling” that motivates us and things become easier. Even daily tasks like waking up early, exercising, etc. seem very welcome and we look forward to it. With the reduction of stress/anxiety, we are calm and collected and prepared for any situation as we are more confident and our self-esteem has increased. We are more positive in our approach towards life and we become better human beings.


In these times we are losing sight of ourselves and concentrating on mindless activities that need to be changed for this, we need to practice mindful techniques in our lives, so we can live life on our terms and as we like Them. There are many scientifically proven articles available on this topic and there are numerous workshops as people are gradually realising the importance of mindfulness and its benefits.

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