Mastering the Art of Mindfulness

February 28, 2017

Takeaways

Five simple ways to practice mindfulness, and the positive effects it will have on your daily life.

“Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery and today is gift; and that’s why it’s called the present.” ------ Eleanor Roosevelt.

Mindfulness is a skill, a practice to remind us to pay attention to ourselves, others and the world around us.

We need this ancient technique today more than ever. The World Health Organization estimates that the cost of stress to American business exceeds $300 billion annually.  What is the price that unmanaged stress has taken on you physically, personally and professionally?

We all value the benefits of physical exercise and more and more of us understand that mindfulness is like going to the gym for the brain.

The good news is that it does not require equipment, has no side effects and it is free. The bad news is that no one can do it for us.

So I am asking you to commit to one minute daily building to ten minutes daily (less than 1% of your awake time) and the ROI will be spectacular.

Here are five simple ways to be mindful:

  1. Stop multitasking.
  2. Use your senses to anchor yourself in the NOW:  what do you see, smell, feel, taste, and hear?
  3. Pay attention to your breath as it goes in and out your nose -- close your eyes -- keep going.  When distracted by noise, thoughts or judgments, gently bring back your attention to your breath.
  4. Put your fork down when chewing your food.  Enjoy it rather than reloading immediately.
  5. Disconnect from phone/emails/social media often and connect with living beings.

Why practice mindfulness?  

Here are five compelling reasons:

  1. Increased resilience
  2. Enhanced creativity and productivity
  3. Improved relationships as it increases the ability to be compassionate including with ourselves
  4. Decreased reactivity
  5. Increased emotional intelligence and ability to regulate emotions

Let’s strive to be better and healthier beings with these simple steps we can do ourselves.

Dr. Adan gave a guided imagery tour and meditation at the 2017 Health Means Business National Summit earlier this month.  She is Medical Director of University Hospital’s Connor Integrative Health Network and a Christopher M. & Sara H. Connor Master Clinician in Integrative Health. She can be reached at: Francoiseadan1@gmail.com