Building self-awareness and social awareness are important skills we can all benefit from.
People who have learned how to be mindful are often more self-aware, socially aware, more confident and more self-accepting.
We can naturally be mindful, but we can also consciously make time to be mindful too.
So how it can it help us?
Mindfulness is proven to develop our skills in empathy and understanding others. When we can better understand what others feel and perhaps even understand their thought process, we can build strong and positive relationships.
Mindfulness is something anyone can do – anywhere, anytime.
When we are being mindful we are paying attention to what is.
When we are being mindful we are in the present moment.
We stay focused on the here and now and not think about the past or think about what we will be doing later.
We ground ourselves in the present moment. When we are mindful we avoid judgement of ourselves and others we just accept what is at that moment.
So what are the benefits of learning how to be mindful?
We become more self-aware, allowing us to make better choices thoughtfully. We are better able to notice our own feelings and how feelings come and go and how our thoughts affect our feelings. We become more confident, socially aware and can use breathing to help ourselves out in difficult moments.
Can you see that mindfulness is a skill that everyone can benefit from?
Mindfulness builds our tolerance for stress by allowing us to take a moment for ourselves and slow down before reacting or fast forwarding to the worst-case scenarios that our minds sometimes love to create for us.
Some studies have shown that mindfulness training can reduce depression and anxiety too.
How can you incorporate mindfulness into daily activities?
Take a strawberry, smell it, taste it, enjoy it. Be slow and purposeful. Sit and breath: Deep breath in, deep breath out. Write about the experience. Allow yourself thinking time when considering how you feel. Sit and breathe and tune in to your body to hear what it is telling you.
Studies show that mindfulness helps develop self-esteem and confidence. This, in turn, can help develop resilience and your capacity to be happy and appreciate all your emotions, whether positive and negative. After all, we each experience highs and lows and to acknowledge this is key. To be mindful that even though we may feel sad at a moment, we will be happy again in the future and to ask ourselves what self-care we can practice making ourselves feel better, e.g. going for a walk, playing a game, having a family movie night, or simply getting an early night.
Three more ways to experience mindfulness:
- Sit quietly, focus simply on what you can hear.
- When eating at a restaurant, smell the food, and think about what you can taste. Try to guess the ingredients in the pasta sauce for example. This brings attention to the act of eating rather than simply rushing eating.
- When walking in nature, bring attention to the sounds, e.g. how many different bird calls can you hear, or how many birds can you see? This brings your attention to your surroundings.
You can also write down or consider how you feel before and after the walk to tune into your emotions.
Spending time on mindfulness is worthwhile and gives you skills for life.
You might also like to try the Smiling Mind App. It has some nice free meditation activities.
Breathe in and breathe out. How do you feel after reading this blog post?
Written by: Jessica Vader
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