*Updated and reposted with permission from The Boozy Gardener. Originally published February 2019.
Update: In class, we often talk about how increased mindfulness is linked to happiness, which is why we practice it so often. Here is some advice for taking it off the mat and into your day-to-day life.
I am nearly two months into my happiness project, inspired by Gretchen Rubin's memoir, which celebrated its 10-year anniversary this year. January was devoted to getting my finances in order; February's goal: rest and relaxation.
Last year brought a lot of changes for me. Some good (a new, high-paying job); some bad (a painful breakup). Surfing these waves left me exhausted, and I knew that I could only take on my other happiness goals once I felt rejuvenated.
In addition to practicing better sleep hygiene so I could get enough zzzs and also scheduling time for myself to enjoy nothing (#MeTimeMonday), I also vowed to be more mindful in February and practice living in the moment. Often, I find myself exhausted because my mind has been buzzing non-stop.
As I have so often found in life, when you have a question, the universe will supply an answer. During a #MeTimeMonday, I was flipping through some old Yoga Journals when I came across a tip to wake yourself to the present moment.
I am often in public when I find my mind wandering, so I whisper, "Wake up," instead of clapping and terrifying my coworkers. I also rarely remember the full quote from step 3, so I generally just whisper to myself, "You are awake. This is now. This is the only time you will exist in this moment."
I can report that this exercise has helped me redirect my mind and focus on the what is happening in the present, instead of worrying about the future or dwelling on the past. Practicing mindfulness has given me more energy and helped me make better, less reactive decisions.
Do you have any tips for mindfulness? If so, please share!