10 Everyday Ways to Practice Mindfulness

everyday ways to practice mindfulness

The art of being here now starts with small steps. It’s often those things in life that sound so simple that prove to be the most challenging. Take, for example, the idea of simply being present in this very moment. Nothing ever seemed more straightforward, until you actually give it a try.

The reality is that being in the moment you’re given is complicated. It’s not inherently easy like it feels it should be, and very rarely does it come naturally.

As human beings, we’re designed to respond well to peaceful environments. Unfortunately, the world we’ve created for ourselves to live in doesn’t lean towards promoting such an uplifted state of being.

Instead, the culture and society we face the moment we step out the door or fire up our devices promote the nurturing of our more detrimental characteristics.

Step back and think about it. We’re constantly told that time is money, that social media followers equate to dollar signs and personal value, and that working overtime is the only way up the ladder. The list of demands grows, and the pressure constantly rises.

What Worry Takes From Us Without Asking


It’s fair to say that things move fast in life. The result of embracing such an unattainable pace is a constant state of worry. The soft voice inside of us that says we’re not keeping up consistently grows louder.

It’s unbridled worry like this that has a phenomenal way of keeping us out of the present moment we’re living in. While we worry about what happened yesterday or even 3-minutes ago, we’re effectively missing this moment. As we panic about what we need to accomplish tomorrow, we’re entirely missing out on where we are right now.

So how do we change it? Is it even possible?

The answer is a resounding yes, and it revolves around the practice of mindfulness. Many people find this answer to be a relief because it’s not demanding. Instead, it’s an art form made up of many small, manageable steps.

The Art of Mindfulness

art of mindfulness

Finding ways to practice mindfulness is a refreshing concept. Yes, they are steps to be learned and put into action, but there is no pressure to achieve perfection when it comes to mindfulness.

Instead, you’re asked to simply commit to a series of daily choices that promise to make a huge difference. Can you hear that collective sigh of relief?

Even looking for intentional ways to practice mindfulness allows you to leave your worries behind. You truly can’t fail at mindfulness if you’re trying… literally at all. The attempt itself has the power to create some noticeable positive effects.

Practicing mindfulness daily comes with a refreshing lack of stress. There is no need to worry about failure—it just doesn’t exist here. When the worry is held at bay, we can begin to be present in the moments we deserve to enjoy and experience.

The art of practicing mindfulness daily doesn’t come without some helpful guidelines. As with everything in life, having a template is a good place to start as you begin the journey of creating something all your own.

Let’s take a look at 10 everyday ways to practice mindfulness that apply to everyone. Isn’t it time you finally start enjoying the moment you’re in?

#1 – Start the Day Differently

start day differently

It’s easy to open your eyes in the morning and immediately begin thinking of everything that lies ahead. From family responsibilities to work obligations, our schedules are full and there are plenty of reasons for our minds to go towards worry upon waking.

Starting the day differently sets a better tone. Instead of getting out of bed and immediately rushing towards the to-do list, consider setting the alarm for a few minutes earlier each day. Give yourself time for some simple stretching.

As you breathe deeply and let your muscles wake up slowly, your thoughts tend to follow suit. Allow yourself time to wake up in a way where you choose the pace.

This simple act of mindfulness asks your body and thoughts to prepare for the day less harshly and instead provides some grace and flexibility for what lies ahead.

#2 – Make a Point to Reflect on Gratitude


One of the greatest threats to worry is gratitude. There’s no quicker way to tackle negative thoughts or fears than taking just 60-seconds out of your day to remember what it is you have in life that you’re thankful for.

If this doesn’t come naturally to mind, it’s worth taking the time to write it down. Having a tangible list of goodness to reflect on puts things back in perspective and cuts through negativity quite quickly. Pull that paper out as many times as you need until gratitude becomes ingrained.

#3 – Check in With Yourself

check in

The way we treat and talk to ourselves throughout the day has a way of manifesting itself in the world. If we’re ignoring our needs, emotions, feelings, and thoughts in the name of work and other responsibilities, that likely extends to others.

In the same way you would check in on a loved one who was struggling, make it a point to check in with yourself at least once daily. A quick 1-minute scan of how you’re feeling gives you a lot to work with.

The ability to recognize what’s stirring certain emotions throughout the day is a good way to determine what adjustments need to be made for the better. That only happens if you give yourself time to examine how you feel.

For example, if that 2:00 coffee with a gossiping coworker makes you feel anxious, it’s time to change up your schedule. If that morning walk lifts your spirits, make it a point never to miss it.

#4 – Schedule Time to Indulge Your Senses

schedule time

The way we experience the world and how we feel emotionally are intricately linked. The phrase, take some time to smell the roses has roots in reality. But how often do we actually put it into practice?

Finding ways to practice mindfulness begins with prioritizing inspiring moments with just as much dedication as we do our work. It looks different for everyone, but ultimately, it comes down to giving your senses a daily gift of some type.

Maybe it means getting up 10-minutes earlier to savor the flavor of that first cup of coffee. Perhaps it means taking time to get outside at least once a day and listen to the sound of the birds.

Neither of these tasks requires much in the way of time. They’re non-intrusive and refreshing acts that allow you to focus on the here and now.

#5 – Connect with Loved Ones


Practicing mindfulness daily doesn’t ever mean isolating your efforts. Nobody is an island and reaching out to others is just as important as reaching inward.

A good place to start is reaching out to at least one loved one daily. Without realizing it, we all tend to get in our heads and the physical act of speaking to a friend or family member can bring us back to the present.

There’s power in human connection, even if it happens over the phone. A few minutes of conversation with someone you love is uplifting and provides some well-deserved perspective on the day.

#6 – Make Hobbies Priorities


Yes, you read that right. If you’re looking for ways to practice mindfulness that are going to give you the here and now connection you’ve been looking for, it’s time to realize that your hobbies are important!

We all have interests and passion that we put on the backburner in the name of life responsibilities. This might feel necessary but sets an unfortunate standard that what we truly love to do doesn’t matter.

Breaking the habit begins with giving what we’re passionate about the same attention as we do our work. A little here goes a very long way.

It could be as simple as enjoying the music you love before you go to bed. Perhaps it’s planning a family hike on weekends and introducing your children to nature. Maybe it’s listening to a language learning track during your commute.

Whatever your hobbies are, there’s a place for them in your life. There’s also always a way to integrate them into your daily routine—but it takes a little mindfulness to make it happen.

#7 – Breathe Intentionally

breathe intentionally

We all take approximately 20,000 breaths per day. The vast majority of those happen without even having to think about it.

When we do take time to consider how we breathe, we often notice changes for the better. Yes, your body can take care of breathing on its own—but when you make an active effort to breathe a bit more deeply, a lot of good is waiting for you.

When you feel yourself getting caught up in stress, let the tension that would normally overwhelm you be your indicator that it’s time for a few deep breaths. There’s more power to deep breathing than most people ever consider.

A single deep breath immediately increases the oxygen supply to your brain. This flow of oxygen subsequently stimulates the nervous system which leads to a wonderful calming effect.

Yes, this type of breathing takes some time to get used to. Most people’s breathing naturally gets shallow and quick under stress as adrenaline flows in response to difficult situations.

If you can make it a regular practice to pair a stressful situation with deep breathing, you’ll find you have more control over your physical and mental response with time.

You might even find that those stressful situations become less impactful. Deep breathing is a simple step that allows you to embrace the moment for good rather than in the fear of what’s to come.

#8 – Make Dining a Purposeful Activity

purposeful dining

In countries around the world, eating is a social activity to be enjoyed at every turn. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner aren’t obligations to simply fuel the body, but experiences worth enjoying and savoring. When it comes to mindfulness, there’s a lot to be said for this slower approach.

Whenever possible, focusing on the food you eat instead of rushing through it or pairing it with work at your desk promises to be beneficial. If you can slow down during meals, you’ll not only enjoy savoring flavors you regularly miss, but you give your body and mind a chance to recuperate.

This is a benefit to you and the tasks that wait because you’ll come back to life refreshed, fueled up, focused, and ready to go.

#9 – Post Reminders for Yourself

post reminders

Finding great ways to practice mindfulness doesn’t happen overnight. It’s normal to need reminders when you’re getting started and a simple sticky note can work wonders on this front!

Placing notes with encouraging words to yourself, or quotes that motivate you to be in the moment is a simple and tangible way to make mindfulness an integral part of your day.

Whether you stick them on your computer, fridge, or steering wheel, you won’t have to worry about forgetting… you. The reminder will be there at all times.

Consider starting with a sticky note that highlights what the Buddha said:

“If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete.”

#10 – Make Someone Else Feel Amazing


In the way that reaching out to a loved one daily is a good way to practice mindfulness, lifting up a colleague or stranger has the same positive effect. Making someone else feel great by giving a compliment, favor, or assistance creates a domino effect of goodness.

Giving a little bit of yourself to others each day boosts your mood but also contributes to a greater, perhaps unseen, good that extends far beyond a simple act. Someone who experiences kindness is likely to pass that sentiment on.

Every time you give someone a hand, you can know with certainty that you’re finding a more intentional place in this world that seems chaotic. What could be more grounding in the present than that type of purpose?

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