Mindfulness in Practice
Besides moments throughout your day when you take conscious control of your mind to pay attention to your thoughts and the world around you, there are other ways in which you can achieve mindfulness that are more structured. For instance, yoga is known for its stress-reducing qualities and is one of the best treatments for anxiety.
A 30-min class forces you to focus on nothing but your body and your breathing. It’s a great way to center yourself after a stressful day, and it’s extremely beneficial to physical health too. Meditation is another one, and probably the most popular form of mindfulness in practice. Breathing meditation allows you to block out your external world and live fully in the presence of your own body and mind for a few minutes. For those just starting out, it might be a little noisy – your own thoughts trying to slip you up. But it’s not about making your mind blank.
That’s impossible, so don’t try to do it. The goal is not an empty mind, but one that is aware. Focus on your breathing and your thoughts will eventually stop barreling around like they’re used to. After a few weeks of practice, you will be able to slip into meditative mode quite easily. For people who struggle with sitting still, then mindful walking or Tai Chi are good choices.
Tai Chi and mindfulness has a long, proven history and as a result, it is often described as a form of meditation. You’re not sitting quietly still, but your entire focus is still on your own breathing, body, and mind.