Mindfulness seems to be all the rage at the moment. Interestingly enough Mister Husband and I had a chat over the weekend (or rather, I did all the talking and he listened) about how we are living in a fast and furious world. Everything has to be now and no-one has time anymore for the simple things in life.
That’s what mindfulness is; finding the calm and stability in our busy lives both for ourselves and with others. Trying not to sweat the small stuff, taking a large(ish) step back and seeing. Really seeing.
It all sounds so New Age and faddish but when was the last time you stared off into space and genuinely blocked everything out. Even if it was only for two minutes before someone brought you back down to earth with a demand for sandwich or a request for help with homework.
Without even realising it, you were practising mindfulness. You were so lost in the moment that you zoned out.
Some people practise mindfulness by meditating but if I am to be completely honest and speaking solely for myself, that isn’t something I can get completely on board with. I am going to trot out the usual “I don’t have time” excuse even though you can, with a bit of practise, mediate several times a day for as little as five minutes at a time.
I do like the sound of meditation but I think in order to be mindful, we need to find something that works for us as an individual rather than what the magazine article or Facebook page dictates. I think that’s the neat thing about it; it isn’t a one size fits all model, mindfulness can be tweaked and adapted to suit your own needs.
Let’s be upfront about something. When you’ve got small kids it can be almost impossible to finish a cup of coffee or visit the bathroom alone. Trying to be mindful in an allocated space of time can be farcical to say the least so here’s my take on it.
I think it can be as basic as enjoying the simple everyday things. So, what are the things you enjoy on a daily basis? Those few minutes first thing in the morning when you wake up but want to stay there just a little bit longer? That stretch before your feet touch the floor? The first cup of coffee of the day? Maybe it’s that half hour alone before the kids wake up? Your eleven o’clock coffee? A glass of wine with your evening meal? Reading the headlines when the kids are in school? Using a favourite moisturiser after a shower? Going for a walk or a run? A cappuccino after the school run? Your favourite soap on TV?
The list is endless. But whatever it is you enjoy doing, take your time and really enjoy it.
And make sure you take that time for yourself. Every day. Not just when you can fit it in.
Only you can mind your mindfulness.