Sarah Coleman: Simple practices for everyday life
For Steamboat Pilot & Today
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — A friend of mine recently gave me a deck of cards labeled Mindfulness Cards. This word is hot right now and, for all reasons, should be. What is mindfulness anyway? How mindful are you? And, how can you cultivate more mindfulness?
“Mindfulness is the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us,” according to mindful.org.
This does not mean that you yourself have to change — just be aware of how you are reacting and/or focusing. That, in itself, can be life changing. With a little bit of guidance, we can help manifest awareness, calm and balance in our daily lives. Each card has a simple phrase on it to help guide or redefine your day. For example, notice strangers or give yourself a gift. Let’s dive in.
By breaking mindfulness up into a few different categories, let this serve you how you best see fit. And get more mindful.
Rest and balance
• Make each breath count: Go ahead, try it! Count your inhales and exhales.
• Listen to your body: It knows, listen!
• Feel the ground: Just like our breath, this connection is always there — feel it, use it, cherish it.
Curiosity and joy
• Smile: Do it, how do you feel?
• Enjoy the ordinary: Sit with it and be right here, right now.
• Where is my mind right now: Think about it, recognize it, and pull yourself back to here and now.
Insight and awareness
• Let it go: Spend a few moments reflecting on your burden then play with the idea of letting it go.
• Learn from distractions: Notice why you get pulled away — are there patterns?
• Take a bigger view: There is always another frame of reference that can provide perspective.
• Thank you: By expressing gratitude, we cultivate appreciation that will brighten your day.
• Thank me: Don’t be so hard of yourself — you are doing the best you can.
• Pay it forward: Just try it, you will reap the benefits almost immediately.
Pick one of these “cards” and write it up in a place you can see every day. Little by little, you will experience more mindfulness and the art of being in the moment. This is NOT an easy practice, but it is just that, a practice. And practice makes you a better person! I mean, no one is great at burpees on the first go. Now, go get your mindfulness on and do a few burpees while you are at it!
Sarah Coleman is a wellness and recovery coach at Foundry Treatment Center Steamboat Springs, a fitness fanatic, a personal trainer, a CrossFitter, a food connoisseur at Bitchin Kitchin and an outdoor enthusiast everywhere.
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