Tag Archives: stress reduction

Mindfulness 101 Be Here Now

Mindfulness is the “buzz word” of the moment! I want to give you some basic instruction on what it is and how to practice and cultivate this awareness into your life.

Mindfulness means Having your Non-Judgemental Awareness in the present moment. You are experiencing the activity fully and you are aware when you wander away. Mindfulness can be practiced as a formal seated meditation practice or in any activity throughout your day.

In Meditation you simply become aware of your body, emotions, mind and breath and notice what is already there without creating an inner dialogue about what you find. When you notice that you wander from the practice gently go back to noticing.

Use routine activities to practice Mindfulness. Showering, driving, walking or eating are ideal for this practice. You will simply be aware of the sensations, smells, be with the experience fully with your gentle attention. At work you can be fully present in a meeting, giving the presenter your full attention, and noticing when you wander to thought, your phone or any other distraction, see how you feel after being fully present to the information.

Make Peace the Rule not the Exception! As you do this practice more and more you will start to notice the benefits of Rest and Digest and Being In the Present Moment.

How to Manage your Stress at Work

Managing stress during your work day is not as hard as you might think. With a few simple practices you can remove yourself from the “treadmill” of fight or flight and bring yourself into a place of “rest and digest”.

Begin by setting an intention to schedule these practices into each and every day, there is a lot of power in ritual (how often do you miss brushing your teeth?). The best way to begin the workday is to practice your seated meditation for 10-20 minutes in the morning before you get to work.  Schedule three two minute breaks into your day, by reminding yourself to pause at 9:00, 12:00 and 3:00, using a reminder chime on your cell phone works well but a written sticky note on your bulletin board or on your computer screen will do the job. Choose one or use the “peace finder” practice of your choice for two minutes at the scheduled time.

Practice mindful breath, eyes opened or closed and begin to count in for four counts feeling the breath come into the nose and down into the belly, hold the breath for four counts and then exhale for four, feeling the breath come back up and exit through the nose., then hold for four counts after the exhale. Do this practices 3 or 4 times and return to your day.

Practice a body scan, bring your awareness to the crown of the head and gently guide your awareness downward into the throat, the chest, the belly the hips and low back all the way down to the toes, gently release stress simply by being aware of any tension or tight spots, then return to your day.

Practice an inward smile. Simply close your eyes and begin to smile inwardly, outwardly or both, let your awareness rest on the feeling the smile creates. Open the eyes and return back to your day.

These are simple practices which , when done on a regular , daily basis will begin to help you release stress, allow you to unplug, and bring your awareness into the present moment. Stress will naturally be released and after some time you will start to experience your day in a more peaceful way.