Experiencing serenity and feeling cool, calm, and collected under pressure, will support your resilience. There are many ways to achieve this and one of the best approaches is through mindfulness meditation – the act of being intensely aware of what you’re sensing and feeling at every moment without interpretation or judgment.
Practicing mindfulness reduces stress, anxiety, and depression and leads to less distraction and more engagement in the world around you. Recent research even shows that mindfulness training reduced stress-induced inflammation better than diet, exercise, and music therapy. Reducing inflammation potentially reduces the incidence of depression, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and even Alzheimer’s disease.
Here are three ways to practice mindfulness that you can start right now.
- Today when you talk to someone even if it’s on the phone, listen carefully and closely to the words that are spoken. Pay attention to what they mean. Don’t interrupt but listen while the other person finishes his thoughts before thinking how you will respond. Do your best to understand what the other person is saying without judging or criticizing. Try to do this several times today.
- Choose a familiar object. It might be your coffee cup, a clock, or your cellphone. Can you look at it as if for the first time? What details do you see? Do you see something you never noticed before about this familiar object? This exercise will help you become more aware of the world around you.
- Pay attention to your breathing. Choose a quiet place where you won’t be interrupted. Sit straight but also relax your body. Focus only on your breathing and allow everything else around you to fade away. Notice how the air flows in and out of your nostrils. If your mind wanders, bring it back to focus on your breathing. Start with five minutes each day and work up to 15 or 20 minutes daily. You may want to set aside a time and place to do this mindfulness exercise to reduce distractions and interruptions.
Remember that when you are mindful of things around you, you will be:
Being mindful is a wonderful way to slow things down and experience serenity and an excellent way to build and strengthen your resilience.