In this day and age it seems chaos is almost a way of life and we often become focused on life’s challenges, deadlines and sky high expectations. Because of this we can often find ourselves loosing our connection with the present moment, our feelings and we tend to loose sight of the important things in life. Such as looking after our health, spending quality time with those most precious to us and taking time for ourselves to do the things that make us happy.
The majority of people find them selves neglecting their self care needs causing our minds and bodies to become run down and counter productive. A great way we can unwind and reconnect with ourselves is to practice mindfulness. Mindfulness is a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations. This is often used as a therapeutic technique to improve well being, making you less preoccupied with concerns about success and self-esteem, making you better able to form deep connections with others.
Mindfulness meditation is a practice often suggested by psychotherapists as part of the treatment of Depression, Anxiety, Couples Conflict, Eating Disorders and OCD. Another benefit of practicing Mindfulness is the positive impacts it has on our physical health. Not only is it an effective way to relieve stress but it has been discovered that Mindfulness may also help to treat a range of different ailments such as reducing chronic pain, lowering blood pressure, help to treat heart disease, improve sleep and offer some relief to gastrointestinal issues.
There are many ways in which you can practice Mindfulness, such as:
Sensory Experimentation- This technique focuses on the five senses. The idea is to focus in on these senses such as “touch” ,”smell” or “taste” and explore and experience them without judgement. Sitting in a quiet room with scented candles is a great way to to awaken the senses. Sipping on herbal tea in a peaceful environment and focusing on the different flavours and how each one makes you feel. Apply a nourishing moisturiser or a stimulating exfoliant will awaken your sense of touch, allow your self to enjoy every sensation.
Meditation (Basic) – Focus one’s mind for a period of time, in silence or with the aid of chanting, for religious or spiritual purposes or as a method of relaxation. Burning of candles or the use of an aroma diffuser with a calming essential oils would be a great asset to meditation as pleasing scents are often found to relax the mind and body and enhance your meditative state.
Emotional Awareness – Take a moment to stop and assess your emotions. Allow yourself to be present in your current state of emotion with out self judgement or fear. Except that all of your emotions are valid for what ever reason and learn to except negative emotions as a part of being so that you can better let them go to allow for a more positive outlook.
It is so important to take time out for our selves and make self care a priority, and we have only just touched on a few ways in which you can practice Mindfulness and its benefits. Just 20-30 minutes a day to take time out and reconnect with your self whether that be done by applying a nourishing face mask and sipping on your favourite herbal tea or delving in to the deep relaxation of meditation in a room filled with the scent of your favourite scented candle , it is one of the most beneficial things we can do for our selves. So if this is not something you are in the practice of doing, i suggest you give it a try!