Mini mindfulness moments
I’ve been volunteering recently at the St Helens Child and Family Centre because I remember so vividly the days when my kids were little and I felt pulled in so many ways to do 100 things at once. And I was hoping I could help the parents find some peace, quiet and calm in their life.
It’s fantastic that mothers are rated of the best multi-taskers on the planet, but the downside is that I was one of the best multi-taskers ever. Specifically, as I continued to give and give, I often put myself down on the very bottom of the list. As in “when I’ve finished feeding the kids and doing laundry, THEN I’ll stop and take care of myself.” Or When I’ve finished driving the kids around to play days and soccer practice THEN I’ll have minute to myself.” or “When the kids take a nap, THEN I can sit down and take a break.”
Truthfully, I did plan time for myself, but I rarely took it. And I never believed people when they advised me to plan in my own “Me-time”. I thought there’s so much that needs done, I should just keep doing more.
Boy was I wrong! And that is the main reason I wanted to volunteer at the Family Centre. I wanted to help parents of young children learn how to take a moment out of their day to practice meditation and mindfulness. To learn now how to deal with the stress of being a parent, to learn now how to honour ourselves as we honour our families. To learn how to create this practice as a way of choosing yourself as a better parent, a better spouse and a better person.
That’s why I created this process I call the mini-mindfulness-moment.
It only takes a moment of your time.
Here’s how it’s done:
Sit upright with all digital devices turned off.
Take a few long, slow deep powerful breaths releasing all tension from the mental, physical, emotional and spiritual bodies.
Allow your breath to exhale out all the tension in your body.
Allow your mind to notice the thoughts as they come up, but notice how they can float by like clouds in the sky.
Keep your awareness totally and completely on the breath.
If you find yourself in the middle of your thoughts, bring your awareness back to your breath and notice how your belly and chest move as you breath in and out.
Notice how your shoulders feel when they’re relaxed and dropped.
Notice how your breath feels on the top of your upper lip as the air moves in and out.
Long, slow, deep, powerful breaths.
And after a few moments, 3 minutes is a great place to start, gently bring your awareness back to your body and return right back to right here, right now.
And that’s all there is to it.
The more you practice this, the easier it will be to relax deeper with every session.
Ideally you would find 3 minutes every morning to calm and ready yourself for everything that will arrive later that day. Doing this will help you keep an even keel no matter what arrives.
I’d love to hear how this works for you.