Mindfulness has become a movement over the past few years. Of course, mindfulness has been used in many cultures, in many different ways for centuries.
I wonder, however, if in the west we have over complicated it? Have we hyped mindfulness up to appear for some people as unattainable or even unattractive?
I would like to offer you a simple mindfulness practice that will only take a few moments of your day. It promises to help you let go of bothersome and painful thoughts. It can help you recognise when you are in a thinking trap. And the practice can gently with compassion, return your thoughts to the moment.
Take a moment to find a comfortable position, close down your eyes and connect to your breath.
Take a breath into your body.
Focus on the rise and fall of your rib cage (place your hands gently on your rib cage to help you direct your breath here).
Feel the sensation as your breath moves in and out of your lungs.
Notice the sensation as the air flows into your body filling your chest and your lungs welcoming and expanding.
Notice what you feel as the air flows out of your chest falling and releasing, your shoulders relaxing, your breath leaving your nostrils.
Focus on emptying your lungs, letting your breath release.
Feel your lungs deflate and rest for a moment before inviting your breath in again to flow and nourish your body.
Give yourself permission to let any thoughts or images to come and go as if they were leaves in a flowing stream. When a new thought arises acknowledge it and allow the current of the stream carry it away.
As you do this keep your mind on your breath, its ebb and flow.
It is natural for our thoughts to carry us away with them when this happens. Take a moment to acknowledge this and gently return to your breath.
Try for ten nourishing mindful breaths in this way whenever you can or whenever you are feeling frazzled, out of sorts or just in need of a break.
Would you like to develop more mindfulness practices that will enable you to find more joy in your life?
Contact me about the Mindfulness Project.