Setting Goals and planning are essential for progress. We benefit from the clear sense of purpose from pursuing a dream, setting goals and identifying action steps to achieve them. Often, however, we find ourselves mentally living in the future and missing out on today! How can we keep our end goal in mind while living mindfully today?
* First, start your day with a Mindfulness Practice. This could be as simple sipping your coffee, really noticing the smell and taste without looking at your phone! Or, you may wish to sit quietly following your breath with your full attention for 10 minutes. Others may wish to meditate with a free app like “Calm” or “10% happier”. This sets the tone neurologically to be more attentive and present.
* Periodically throughout the day, pause and simply breathe for 30 – 60 seconds with your full awareness on the physical sensation of breathing. I recommend setting an alarm or reminder at regular intervals perhaps 10 -, 12, 3 and 6. This simple technique may show you if you hold the breath or breathe in a rapid- shallow pattern, a common; unconscious stress response.
*Make a deliberate choice to notice your surroundings. If on a walk, notice the flowers, changing leaves, or birds singing rather than worrying about what happened yesterday or what might come next. If in a meeting, really listen to the people speaking – listen for meaning and emotion.
* At the end of each day, focus on the accomplishments you made including effort and progress. And, list 3 things you are grateful for from that day.
*Pay attention to balance: Are you focusing too much on the long-term project and neglecting a significant responsibility? Neglecting self-care?
When we live each day consciously, we can be more at choice so we enjoy our todays while working toward that future goal.
If you are interested in learning more about Mindfulness you might benefit from my Mindfulness Based Support Group starting Oct 23, 2019 at 7:30 pm. See upcoming events for details.