A little while ago, I teamed up with CareerCake to present a video course called Mindfulness for Professionals. People may not necessarily associate mindfulness with the workplace, or they may not associate yoga with mindfulness, but my personal experiences have taught me how helpful mindfulness can be in every aspect of your life.
What is mindfulness?
According to the NHS, mindfulness is a state of mind where you are aware of what’s happening in a specific moment – whether that’s what is going on around you, what your senses are noticing, how busy your thoughts are or how you feel physically.
How can mindfulness help me?
Our thoughts and feelings can drive our behaviour, which can lead to us feeling overwhelmed, tired, frazzled, stressed or anxious. Checking in with ourselves through mindfulness is a way of hitting reset and gaining a better understanding of how we’re coping. From there, we can work towards improving our mental, emotional and physical selves during the day-to-day.
Where can yoga and mindfulness work together?
When we practice yoga, we focus on the breath, the body and sensations that occur as we hold poses and move between them. We direct our attention to the practice, trying to let go of any unrelated thoughts that pop into our head. This meditative style of being is an act of mindfulness – checking in, noticing, accepting and being kind to ourselves. The more we practice yoga, meditation and mindfulness, the easier it becomes to find this inner peace and self-acceptance.
What can I learn through the course?
If you want to find out more about mindfulness, my Mindfulness for Professionals series is a perfect in-road. Over nine episodes, I’ll give you an introduction into mindfulness then provide you with the tools you need to practice mindfulness in your own time. You’ll also learn how to apply mindfulness to your everyday life, be it at home, during yoga or at work. If you’d rather read about mindfulness than watch videos about it, check out my book, The Mind, Body & Soul Workout Guide.
What little things can I do to bring mindfulness into my life?
There are plenty of things you can try! Here are five examples of my personal favourites to get you started:
- Start a journal: every night, reflect on your day and make a note of three positive feelings or thoughts that you encountered that day, two things you are grateful for and one small aim for the future
- Practice yoga: moving consciously while paying attention to your breath, body and feelings is a great way to access a more mindful place. Join a local yoga class to keep yourself motivated and dedicated to regular practice
- Listen: Unplug your headphones to listen to the sounds of the world around you while you’re walking around or sat somewhere, or make an effort to concentrate on what someone is saying to you during a conversation
- Sud up and slow down: while you’re doing the washing up, take a second to watch the bubbles and the water flow over your hands and the items you’re washing. Think about how the water feels, how the washing up liquid smells and how you can take something from dirty to clean with a few simple motions
- Take a moment: set a three-minute timer, close your eyes and focus on your breathing, inhaling for four counts then exhaling for five. Return to your normal breathing after ten cycles but stay focused on it until the timer runs out
If you try out any of these mindfulness suggestions or have tips of your own, I’d love to hear from you. Or if you have any questions about mindfulness, please feel free to get in touch.