Find more stories to help you achieve awesome status in our self-improvement guide! We’ll be adding more tips, tricks, guides and more throughout September, so be sure to check back as the month progresses for even more ways to be a better you.
Most of our days fit into a neat, packaged routine. We wake up at 7 a.m., shower, eat cereal, drive to work, sit in meetings, eat a sandwich, pick up the kids, make dinner, do dishes, help with homework, watch TV, go to bed, and repeat the whole thing the next day.
The problem with routine is sometimes we go through the motions without ever having a mindful moment in our day. Here’s how to be mindful five times each day just by stopping, taking a breather, and being present.
Being mindful can increase your happiness, and these 5 things healthy people do every day can improve your health, too. Why not try a combination of both?
When your alarm goes off
No one likes waking up to the sound of a blaring alarm, but for most of us that’s the only option. Before you hop out of bed, take a few moments to get in a good head space. Don’t hop out of bed, don’t flip on the TV, don’t pick up your phone and check emails.
Focus on your breathing or stretch and think about the top three things you want to achieve today. It doesn’t have to make you late for work. Even spending a couple minutes in a mindful state can help you wake up on the right side of the bed and set your day up for success.
Do you have trouble getting up even with an obnoxious, blaring alarm? Here’s how to teach yourself to wake up when your alarm goes off, no snooze button allowed!
When you eat lunch
So many of us are guilty of eating lunch at our desk, but often taking time for a real lunch can actually lead to greater productivity throughout the day. Even if you’ve only got 15 minutes to spare, get up from your desk and eat elsewhere.
Don’t multitask while you eat. Put work aside, set your laptop out of arm’s reach, and give yourself permission to feel whatever it is you’re feeling. Let your mind wander from work and I bet when lunch is over, you’ll be rejuvenated to take on the rest of the work day.
When you’re in the car
Driving should be a peaceful time. When you’re driving, you really shouldn’t be doing anything but driving, so it’s the perfect opportunity to be mindful. With two hands on the wheel, your mind is free to be in the moment. Even if you’re running late, there’s nothing you can do but be in that car and safely continue onto your destination.
By being mindful while you drive, you’re not only getting the therapeutic benefits but you’ll be more aware of your surroundings, which can help you get to your destination safely.
When you’re outdoors
Fresh air has a way of launching us into a mindful state. Find a moment in each day to appreciate the outdoors. Of course, you don’t have time in every day for a nature hike or a swim, but even a small outdoor moment can have a big impact on your day.
Take a walk around the block before leaving the gym or have a glass of wine on your porch when you get home from work. The key is making the time count, so put down your phone and open your eyes to your surroundings.
When you’re at the dinner table
Numerous studies have proved the positive impact of having dinner together as a family. Turn the TV off during dinner. Give everyone at the table an opportunity to talk about their day. It can be a casual conversation or a more structured activity where everyone goes around the table and talks about their ups and downs.
There’s a reason both lunch and dinner are on this list of mindful moments. Think of eating not only as a necessity but as a chance to take a break from our hectic lives. Plus, when you’re more mindful while eating, it could also lead to healthier choices and less overeating.
Speaking of more mindful eating, have you taken our 100 veggies in one week challenge yet? Check out our challenge and guide to this healthy cleanse here!