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Mindfulness has become an every day thing for me now – it’s no longer just a word on a page with an ideal message. Mindfulness has been a key component in my minimalist journey. I recently read the book Mindfulness in Everyday Life: How to Stop Worries and Stress and Enjoy Peace and Happiness with Mindfulness and Meditation and it explained the benefits of mindfulness are countless including – focus, attention, creativity, relaxation, motivation, and more! All of these benefits help YOU become more driven in your journey towards your goals. There’s a few things you can do to bring mindfulness into your day to day activities:
- Be fully present in.every.moment. We’re so quick to jump from moment to moment, we never become fully invested in a single moment. The mind is constantly racing in different directions, stretching your attention and never fully being present. In the end, we wind up unsatisfied and don’t learn from our mistakes. Make it a point to be present in every moment of your day – yes, even the bad ones.
How this helps in your minimalist journey: You learn as you go. Decluttering simply for the sake of decluttering doesn’t give you any long term benefit other than a cleaner space. By being fully present in the moment as you’re decluttering you can evaluate the action and focus on the reason you’re doing it, yielding better results.
- Use bad experiences as a chance to grow. Reflect on what has happened. Take a moment to acknowledge the event, how you’re feeling, and how you can improve in the future. Use these moments as learning experiences.
How this helps in your minimalist journey: There is going to be bloopers during your journey – I’ve certainly faced my fair share of them, but rather than criticize myself for the mistakes, I can use them to grow. I take time every day to reflect on my successes and failures, and use this reflection time as a chance to acknowledge what I can try next time.
- Focus on one thing at a time. This may be the hardest one to do. Every day is a struggle to complete as many activities as possible. We complain there’s not enough time in a day, right? Problem is, by stretching our focus across multiple projects, no project gets our 110%.
How this helps in your minimalist journey: Tasks begin to feel more complete. You may even begin to feel excited or proud of your results, rather than just half heartedly going through the motions.
15 Minute Exercise: Close your eyes (wherever you are doesn’t matter, so long as you’re not driving – you’re not driving, are you?). What thoughts are running through your mind? Take the next five minutes to acknowledge these thoughts, to acknowledge how these thoughts affect your body.
Now… release it all and focus on your body. How are you feeling in this moment? How does your body feel? Focus on your breathing and really listen to it for the next five minutes. The slow intake and gentle exhale.
Finally… open your eyes. Observe what is around you and in front of you. Pick ONE thing and devote the next five minutes to observing that one thing. This could be another person, an animal, an insect, a plant, etc. Look closely at this thing, observe it, and pretend you are seeing it for the very first time. Notice the little details, the way it moves, the slow steady breathing, the soft unintentional sways…. Don’t interact with it. We’re taking this moment simply to just be.
For tips on how to begin your decluttering journey, you can Start Here, or snag a copy of the 30 Day Challenge (our Minimalism and Decluttering eBook).