There are different methods for mindfulness and my favorites usually center around being very still and silent. I also love taking mindful walks which allow me to see what I usually rush past. Mindful walks are especially fun in new places. What better way to connect with a place then by consciously looking, feeling and listening to what surrounds you?
Grounding is helpful when I’m feeling anxious or rushed, but need to be present. Often before I began in the garden I practice grounding so I can focus on being present and enjoying the activity instead of contemplating every single little thing that needs to be completed. To ground is rather simple. Start by noticing your breath. Is it rapid, all over the place or slow and steady? Began slow, deep breathing. I find that taking three deep inhales and exhales helps me ground.
From here I choose one of my favorite breath movements or affirmations:
Visualize your favorite place: Bring it to life in your mind by focusing on as many little details as you can recall. Perhaps it’s a mountain meadow full of flowers, your favorite café with walls covered in art or a sanctuary space you retreat into. It can even be a place you’ve never visited. Use your imagination to create and bring to life a safe space. Your mind will drift this way and that so to stay in this safe space you can try focusing on your breathing.
Notice your breathing. If it is erratic or you’re feeling anxious, slow down your breathing. Sometimes it helps me to mentally say “Breathe In/Aspirar” with each in breath and “Breathe Out/ Espirar” with each out breath. You can also count your breaths. I like to count to 100 and then count backwards to one.
Use repetitive intentions: I choose a word or sentence to describe my intention and mentally say it with each breath. For example you can choose to breathe in awareness. So with each breath say “breathing in awareness” followed by “breathing out awareness”. If I’m having trouble falling asleep because of all the thoughts in my head I mentally repeat the sentence “Rest in silence and stillness.”
Make noise: Create a humming noise like “Om”. I like to use this when I cannot concentrate because it forces me to consciously continue making the noise. Sometimes I will need to do this for a few minutes and then I can focus on my breathing or counting.
Use movement meditation: If you have a lot of energy like I do or if you’re feeling very unsettled, try a walking meditation. I love to do this when I feel a lot of pent up energy. I choose two to three words to continuously repeat, I carry a bracelet of wooden beads to move with my fingers and I pace back and forth in my room or walk around a park. This creates a rhythm to help me stay focused.
Circle Affirmation: My peaceful thoughts become peaceful words, become peaceful actions, become peaceful thoughts, become peaceful words, become peaceful actions, become peaceful thoughts…
Now if you’re feeling grounded you can start a new task or continue on with your activities. If you’re still feeling ungrounded then start over with the deep breaths or try sitting/standing in silence.
“Awareness of the present moment clears away mental obstacles.”
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