My grandma has always been one of my biggest fans. I used to go and spend a month every summer with her in a small town in northern Minnesota where I would attend hockey school. From the moment that I stepped on the ice to the moment I got off, she would be there in the bleachers watching me and cheering me on.
When it comes to my writing and my blog, she is the same exact way. Every time I post something new, she is always the first person to read it and like it.
To me, her constant support in everything that I do makes me realize how blessed I am to have her in my life. She has always been one of my favorite people to be around, and despite now living in different states, she has continued to find new ways to make an impact on my life.
This includes being the person who got me into practicing mindfulness.
I didn’t really know anything about mindfulness when she first recommended that I start practicing it. I was more on the “positivity train” and didn’t really want to try meditation or whatever I thought it meant to practice mindfulness.
But as I started hearing more and more about mindfulness and the positive impact that it can create in one’s life, I started to become more intrigued. I would soon realize that mindfulness isn’t just sitting cross-legged singing Kum Ba Yah. It’s more about being present at the exact moment in which you are in. It’s about recognizing your thoughts, letting the air fill your lungs, focusing on your breath, and cleansing your soul.
Mindfulness for Beginners
When I first started practicing (now mind you, I too am still a beginner), I thought it was the dumbest, most pointless thing in the world. Why would anyone want to waste their time directing their thoughts and thinking about their thoughts instead of going out and actually working to turn those thoughts into their reality?
As I followed through with the practice, though, I started to feel a chance. It was a small change, but it was a change nonetheless. My thoughts became clearer, I wouldn’t get as irritated or stressed as easily, and my body simply felt cleaner and refreshed.
I know that sounds weird, but that’s the best way that I can describe it.
It’s not like I sit there for an hour a day and meditate (although some people do that, and that’s completely fine to do). Instead, I simply practice for a few minutes right when I wake up, and a few minutes right before I go to bed. In total, I practice for six minutes a day.
Am I an expert? Not a chance. But it’s not about being an expert. It’s about being you and being present. For me, I simply close my eyes, set an intention for the day, try to focus solely on my breathing, and if my mind wanders, I just try to bring the focus back to my breathing. This routine has helped me to simply be more present throughout the day, which is what being mindful is all about.
Benefits of Practicing Mindfulness
Okay, the one major benefit that I have noticed since starting to practice mindfulness has been the fact that my mind wanders less throughout the day. I am a lot less stressed and simply more engaged in the moment that I am living in. For someone whose mind is normally racing around like a Nascar track, this has been a nice change of pace to my life.
It also helps me to dial in on my goals and the things that I want to achieve. When you set an intention, you are immediately bringing awareness to your thoughts and towards your goals that you have. And well, when you bring awareness towards your thoughts and goals, you are more likely to manifest them.
Should You Practice Mindfulness?
If you are somebody with a lot of stress in your life, or even if you are somebody who struggles with following through on their goals, then why not practice mindfulness?
In the short amount of time that I have been practicing mindfulness, I have only noticed positive changes to my life in doing so. Just set an intention for your day, focus on the present moment, turn your mind into a place of peace and stillness, and just appreciate all of the life around you.
I didn’t start sooner because I didn’t think there was a point to it, but after a few months of practicing, I have started to notice some change. The change may not have been immediate, and it may not be substantial, but any positive change is worth it. I simply feel better and that’s what matters.
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