Mindfulness is a very valuable and accessible practice. So much is being written about it today! Don’t drive yourself crazy thinking that you can just sit and be mindful. It’s difficult, and, for most of us, what’s the use? Keep your mindfulness in motion.
We give 40 activities that combine well with mindfulness practice in our book Caregiver Revolution. These are things as simple as making a bed or doing dishes. While cooking dinner, gently let go of the flow of thoughts, plans, worries, (your inner chatter), and really focus on the details of the task at hand. Notice as much as you can about what you are doing and do the job well. Why? Simply because it strengthens your attention. This is not new age fluff. The more you work with your attention, the stronger it gets…just like any skill. Attention is the one skill that everyone has but it generally remains undeveloped, and here’s a big key; focused attention REALLY relieves stress and gives you freedom to be in the present moment.
This might not mean anything to you. So much of this is experiential. If you are an artist, artisan, hobbyist or collector, if you work on crafts of any sort, are a seamstress, a singer, a musician, then you know what this is, you’ve had a taste.
I’m not going to expound a lot on theories of mindfulness. An ounce of practice is worth a ton of theory. So good luck with your mindfulness in motion practice. Return again and again to the present. This never comes easy but it becomes easier and you will realize the benefits as you go.
Illustration by the wonderful talented artist and illustrator Lin Larsen