Living more mindfully is something I strive to do every day. Granted, it doesn’t all work out like that but the intention is always there. I know I’m the best version of myself when I’m being mindful and balanced, so it’s a big priority. Of course it is totally unique to every individual, but here’s how I try to do it…
COUNTING THE LITTLE THINGS
Ahhh. I always say the little things are what I live for and it’s true. It’s like it’s almost in my DNA to look for everyday moments of magic. I remember getting so excited about things that were so simple when I was little, and I’m glad I can still feel like that now. Whether that’s a cup of tea in one of my favourite mugs, or painting my nails with a fresh coat, they brighten up the day. It also helps me live in the moment, I’m not thinking about future worries or past memories, I’m thinking about RIGHT NOW.
KNOW WHAT WORKS FOR YOU
For me personally, I have to be strict with myself on knowing my boundaries. I can easily get carried away and that enthusiasm is great, but realistically I know if I’ve been out all day, I need a night at home and not go somewhere else again, that’s just how I re-set. Being mindful means taking care of your mental health and looking after YOU.
FIND A MINDFUL ACTIVITY- IT DOESNT *HAVE* TO BE MEDITATION IF YOU DON’T LIKE IT.
There’s quite a few things I enjoy that I like to turn into mindful events, such as colouring, walking the dog outside, and baking. I’m trying to incorporate new activities into my daily routine, and I’m loving new hobbies such as cross-stitching too.
Is being more mindful something that you’re thinking about?
I wrote a little while ago about why I meditate, but in today’s post I’m telling you why YOU should. I try to not be preachy and the notion of telling anyone they ‘have’ to do something makes me feel a bit icky inside, so take all of this with a pinch of salt if it isn’t your jam. If you’re interested, hear me out, you might be swayed…
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE TIME
I’m sorry but I don’t think anyone can use this excuse for something that is going to take 10 MINUTES out of their day. Granted I’m not a mum or a business owner myself, but we’ve all got 10 minutes to be found somewhere right? Even if you spend 10 minutes less scrolling on your phone, using that time for meditation will honestly, change the game for you. Have a little think about where you could grab a few moments on your own and begin with a few days a week. If you don’t have 10 minutes, anything is better than nothing! Even a few mindful breaths is a great habit to start.
BECAUSE IT WILL KEEP YOU BALANCED
I can probably guarantee that if you make meditation a regular practice in your daily life, you will without a doubt feel better because of it. You’ll sleep better, feel more in control of your life, be a kinder person. I’m basically saying it’s like pure magic (please try not to eye-roll at me)
For me, it makes me feel happier on bad day and like I can have a mini fresh start whenever I need to. The way I describe how I feel after I’ve meditated is the feeling of jumping into a cool pool on holiday when you’re too hot. Instant relief.
BECAUSE DOING SOMETHING FOR YOURSELF IS NECESSARY
We are surronded by people. It’s not often that we are actually alone, and having something that you can look forward to and work on for yourself, by yourself, is a great feeling. Knowing that you don’t have to depend on anyone to keep it up with you, and you are the sole person in charge always makes me feel motivated and inspired.
You know those days when you’ve been sat refreshing Twitter and Instagram ALL day, usually without even realising it? Or it could be you’re struggling with something and engaging/interacting with others is something you just purely do not have the energy for at the moment? Heres what I do when it happens to me…
TAKE TIME OUT
It’s an obvious one, but the first thing I do is put the bloody phone down. Even better, turn it off. Even if it’s just for the majority of the evening, you need to take a step back. I know when I feel like this I get really bad headaches just from staring at a screen for so long, so maybe try un-winding with a hot bath and enjoying the company of your partner or family for the rest of the day. After some self-care you’ll feel ready to get back online again and see what the Blogosphere is up to.
CURATE YOUR FEED
Now you’ve recovered from the overwhelm but still feeling a little ‘ugh’, you need to start thinking about the people you currently follow. Are they positive influences in your feed or do their pictures trigger something in you? Everyone’s content changes and I don’t think there is anything wrong with unfollowing if you can’t relate to them anymore. If this feels too harsh, you could always send them a kind message explaining where you’re at currently, and that you mean no harm.
Everyone has the control over what THEY want to see. Make sure it’s inspiring, not discouraging.
The final thing I would advise after feeling social media overwhelm, is to establish boundaries. This can mean choosing a specific time that you allocate only to engaging with others, and then logging off and getting on with the rest of your day. I know that I for one have to be quiet strict with myself sometimes so I don’t fall down the hole again, so I try to not scroll before bed and read a book, and will sometimes leave my phone at home if I’m going out for a few hours so I’m not distracted by it.
At the end of the day I think social media is a luxury for us all, and it should add to our lives and enhance it, not subtract and make us feel bad, tired or drained.
You guys know I love self-care. And it can change on any type of day, sometimes you need something different than yesterday to make you feel good. Its all about tuning into what your body, and mental health requires in that moment.
Here’s some of my favourite self-care rituals that always keep me going..
Making a cup of tea
Having a hot bath
Treating myself to a sweet treat
Having a lie-in
Getting into bed to relax but not sleep through the day
Watching a favourite show
Seeing my family
Making the effort to wear makeup
No makeup days
Wearing clothes that make me feel great
Not bothering about my appearance
Getting lost in a book
Turning my phone off
Listening to my favourite songs
Lighting a candle
Eating lots of fruit and veg
Connecting with others online
Painting my nails
Playing with my dog on the floor
Going for a walk
Watching a film I love and have already seen to comfort me
Buying myself flowers for no reason
Writing in my journal
Cooking or baking something for me to eat
Getting myself a Starbucks
Being silly, laughing, dancing, feeling carefree
Looking at old photos
Do you do any of these too, is there something else I need to add to my list?
Being mindful at Christmas can seem a bit of a tough concept to imagine, but really, it only makes this wonderful time of year even better. Here are my tips on how I’m planning on being more mindful this year..
Leaving the phone to one side
This isn’t another post to tell you to put the damn phone away, but where you can, maybe leave it in another room for a few hours and spend some quality time with your loved ones. This season only rolls around once a year (great job, Nat) and especially if you love Christmas like I do, I want to make the most of it and not be attached to my phone. I want to experience the magical moments that the festive season brings, and of course snapping a quick picture here and there. And don’t worry about missing out, the majority of your online pals will be most likely having a little break over Christmas too.
Taking time for your comforts
Christmas can be a stressful time for some of us, reunited with family members with all different personalities or trying to fit everyone in when the schedule’s busy, sometimes it takes work to make everything run smoothly. When you get stressed, it’s very easy to let your ‘me-time’ slip. Make sure you schedule in some time for just yourself, and enjoy the things that bring you happiness and comfort. Whether that’s reading a book over a cup of tea, or listening to a new podcast episode, it’s important for you and your mental health.
Only one day at a time
With all the excitement of Christmas, it’s easy to get ahead of ourselves and think about what we are doing next, constantly. We can have the most exciting plans to really relish the festive season this year, but if we’re not being mindful and living in the moment, it can be such a waste of a beautiful time. Remember to focus on only one day at a time and look for the magical moments everyday, the present is all we ever have, so be appreciative of it and wonder in all it’s glory.