The only moment that truly exists is the here and now, and that is the key to living life in a mindful way.
With the stress of family and career, it is hard not to get caught up in the rush of everyday life. By practicing mindfulness everyday, we learn to embrace the truth that the path to peace exists only within ourselves.
I came across this brilliant article from a Zen master that goes through 10 essential habits of mindfulness. I’ve summarized the most important points below.
These 10 daily habits to practice mindfulness will help you to connect with the joy and balance that can be found within each present moment.
1) Release Judgment
This not only applies to others, but to yourself as well. Don’t judge yourself so harshly for your perceived faults. Instead, honor the strengths within you. Remind yourself that there is no wrong way, only another way.
2) Honor your Feelings
Fighting against your emotions and thoughts will only increase anxiety. Slow down and acknowledge what you are feeling and the reasons why. By approaching your feelings with a calm mindset you can stop negative emotions in their tracks.
3) Remember to Breathe
Breath is the essence of life, and consciously being aware of your breathing has dramatic affects on the mind and body. Make it a daily habit to stop throughout the day and take several slow, deep breaths.
4) Make Time for Yourself Everyday
You cannot take care of others if you are not taking care of yourself. When practicing mindful living, give yourself the gift of taking time each day to honor your own needs.
5) Notice the Small Things in Life
Living in a mindful state means appreciating and acknowledging the simple joys of the world around you. Make time for a short walk everyday, and use this time to focus on the simple beauty that surrounds you.
6) Live your Passion
Live your passion, and all else will follow. Be aware of your emotions throughout the day, and make it a habit to look for the positive in every situation.
7) Smile at Strangers
A smile and kind word has the power to turn around someone’s day. Practice reaching beyond your comfort zone and share your joy with the world. A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle.
8) Unplug from Technology
Technology is involved in every aspect of modern society, and the constant distractions have disconnected us from each other and ourselves. Take time each day to completely unplug from the blackhole of technology and spend quality time with those you love.
9) Try Mindful Meditation
Mindful meditation focuses on the idea that you are not your thoughts. Through conscious breathing and honoring of your emotions, practicing mindful meditation will teach you to reconnect with the present moment.
10) Focus on One Task at a Time
Multi-tasking is the norm in today’s society, but trying to do everything at once is the opposite of practicing a mindful life. Prioritize your to-do lists and take on tasks one at a time.
Living a mindful life is a simple idea, but one that is hard to put into practice in this modern world. Release judgment as you start to incorporate these daily habits into your life, knowing that every moment is the perfect moment to begin anew.