Entity reports on the keys to mindfulness.

We are constantly being told to “be mindful” and to “practice mindfulness,” but what does that even mean?

The definition of mindfulness according the the American Oxford Dictionary is “the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something”… again, what does that mean?

We have created our own definition of mindfulness and how to be mindful in six easy steps:

To be mindful is to…

1 Be grateful.

A huge part of being mindful is being aware of your surroundings and this includes being aware of how much you have to be thankful for.

If you’re reading this article on this strictly online magazine, it means you’re on a computer and just having that access is enough to be grateful for.

Waking up with gratitude is the first step to being mindful and living an overall happier life. Take a second when you wake up to look around you and genuinely feel fortunate for everything you have (and not just material things).

2 Stay in the moment.

In a time period where so much of the world is seen through a screen, it is important to look up from our devices and experience the world and people around us. Whether it’s nature, your friends, a sunset or a delicious meal, put down your phone and just enjoy it.

Don’t spend your time wishing you were wherever that last Instagram post was. Your life is meant to be lived through you, and if you are constantly wishing you were elsewhere, how will you experience your life for yourself?

3 Refrain from judgement.

Whether it is about yourself or other people, part of practicing mindfulness is being mindful of your and other people’s feelings. Sometimes it is hard to refrain from making an instant judgement about a new person you meet, but if you let those judgements go, you will slowly stop making those initial assumptions.

Don’t let judgement hold you back from learning about people and letting them prove your judgements wrong. Be aware, but don’t judge (at least not until you have a good reason to).

4 Meditate.

Just seeing the word “meditate” is intimidating and discouraging. I don’t have a bamboo garden to meditate in and I don’t know how to do yoga, either, but that is not at the core of meditation. Meditation is about setting aside the time and space (even if it’s just on your bed) for yourself.

In order to meditate you just need a comfortable seat. The first step is to sit comfortably, but also sit up straight.

Be aware of your body position, but remain comfortable. Focus on your breathing. If your mind wanders, that’s okay, but bring your attention back to your breathing. Practice awareness.

When you realize it is just all these little things you need to do in order to be mindful, it is a lot more welcoming than what we originally thought. Mindfulness does not require 10 hours of mediation or 12 stone gardens in your front yard. It’s pretty manageable.

Edited by Kayla Caldwell

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