I think I tell a lot of clients, if not all, about the benefits of Mindfulness. Mindfulness, is the practice of the art of being present. That's how I like to describe it. Being present is an art form. It certainly has the potential to be. To mindfully eat. Slowly. With focus. With attention. Noticing. Mindfulness of walking. Feeling your feet touch the ground. Feeling the air in your chest. Mindfulness of connection. Noticing how you are feeling in the presence of another. Noticing how they are feeling. I could go on.
In our moment to moment lives, we have choice after choice to make. Do you want to be present and awake in your moments? Do you want to make better choices in your moments? Mindful Meditation, when practiced daily, in a routine if possible, trains our easily distracted minds to focus, to be present. There are many ways to achieve this. Here is how I did it, and continue to do it.
1. Sit upright, with your spine as straight as is comfortable for you. The straighter the better. Sitting on the floor is best, as it offers you a better opportunity to sit upright, and to feel the ground beneath you. You can sit in a cosy chair, or up in bed, or whatever.
2. Set your timer for 5 minutes, 10, or 15 or 20 minutes as you progress.
3. As the five minutes begin, close your eyes, and relax your hands onto your lap. Palms open, soft. For five minutes, keep your focus on your breath. Breathing in. Breathing out. And count each breath. Count 1, breathe in. Breathe out. Count 2, breathe in. Breathe out. Count 3 etc. When you get to 10, start again at 1. And just keep counting your breaths for five minutes.
4. Make sure you count in the same place at each breath. For example, counting just before your breathe in.
5. Your mind will wander. And your work is to notice your mind wandering and bring it back to focusing on your counting, your breathing. In. Out.
6. When five minutes are up, your timer will go off. Open your eyes. Gather yourself for a second. Reset the timer for another five minutes. And go again.
7. This time you will count in a different part of the breath. Breathe in, count 1. Breathe out. Breathe in, count 2. Breathe out.
As you are meditating, you really start connecting in with your inner landscape. You get to know yourself more. How difficult it is to focus. To stay present and awake in your moments. You have an opportunity to drop deep into yourself and see who you are.
I highly recommend this mediation technique for anxiety, autism, stress and more.
Let me know if you have any questions in the comments below.