Last weekend I was with my husband traveling to Portland. As the airplane was about to take off, I felt a moment of panic. I took a deep breath and grabbed my husband’s hand. I noticed the way it felt in mine, I noticed my feet on the floor and I noticed the sensation of the airplane’s wheels beneath us as they rolled and sped up. I looked out the window and noticed the buildings, the road, and the sky. I had a moment of pure noticing exactly what is, and realized that I was safe.
I remember when I was first learning the tools and techniques for a more peaceful me, it felt foreign trying to explain to others what exactly it was—this thing called Mindfulness. Now, google the word and see how many articles and blogs pop up on it!
This past week a client asked about it. “What’s that thing everyone is talking about? It’s like meditating. Do you think that will help me?” Oh, how mindfulness can and will help you, love.
Mindfulness is a form of meditation, and it’s my preferred way to get into the right headspace. Whether I’m feeling happy, sad, fearful, anxious, or simply going about my day doing ordinary, mundane things, it is the daily practice of presence that grounds me in my life. I know people who happily plop themselves pillows and meditate the good old way most of us probably envision, but the good news is that mindfulness can become a daily practice that is engrained in you as you go about your day, no pillow needed.
It all starts with noticing, with neutral awareness, what you are doing and when you are doing it as you hone in on your senses.
When you are walking outside on a crisp, fall day, you can notice the colorful leaves as they sway and veer slowly to the ground.
The next time you are putting lotion on your hands, notice how it gradually goes from cool to warm as you gently massage it into your skin.
When you are talking to a friend, be truly present in the conversation, noticing and hearing all that she is telling you.
As you are enjoying your morning coffee, pay attention to the warmth of the mug as you hold it in your hands and the way the coffee tastes as you drink it, sip by sip.
These moments are all just tiny examples of mindfulness meditation—a daily practice of intentional presence in your life.
The bonus for living a mindful life? Inner calm and peace, girlfriend. When you get in the habit of noticing, you are really flexing your mind muscle and staying in a place of constant gratitude for exactly what is in your life.