With age comes wisdom, but sometimes even the sharpest of minds can overthink a situation, resulting in stress or negativity. Whether you find yourself thinking negative thoughts or you’re having trouble focusing on a task, it may be a sign you need to give your brain a reset. One proven psychological tool to calm your mind and reduce stress is the act of mindfulness.
Mindfulness involves being aware of what you’re sensing or feeling in the moment without interpretation or judgment. It’s a way to check your emotions and find balance. In this article, we’ll share some simple mindfulness exercises that you can incorporate into your daily routine.
Mindfulness Exercise 1: Meditation
Some people describe mindfulness as a type of meditation, while others view mindfulness as a state of being and meditation as a tool used to achieve mindfulness. Regardless, meditation is one of the more popular mindfulness exercises because of its emphasis on being present.
Three meditation exercises you can try at home, as highlighted by Mayo Clinic, include:
- Body scan meditation: A form of meditation where you lie on your back with your legs extended while focusing your attention on each part of your body.
- Sitting meditation: A form of meditation that involves sitting comfortably with your back straight and feet flat on the floor while focusing on your breath.
- Walking meditation: A form of meditation where you find a quiet place to walk while focusing on the experience.
Meditation is one of the more closely studied mindfulness exercises. There is evidence that supports meditation as a means for relieving stress, anxiety, pain, and depression. Studies have even shown that meditation can help people manage insomnia and high blood pressure.
Mindfulness Exercise 2: Mindful Eating
While mealtime can inspire meaningful social interaction, it also presents an opportunity to unwind while savoring each bite. Mindful eating is a mindfulness exercise that involves paying close attention to your experiences and physical cues while eating.
At its most fundamental level, mindful eating is the act of engaging your senses by noticing colors, smells, sounds, textures, and flavors that go along with both meal preparation and dining. There are many ways to practice mindful eating, but the most important part is being fully present.
Of course, mindful eating is easier to do if you’re enjoying a meal on your own versus with a group. But mindful eating is also possible in a group setting if everyone is on board.
Mindfulness Exercise 3: Drawing or Coloring
When was the last time you picked up a pencil and paper and just sat down and drew something? Sure, if you’re an art enthusiast maybe it wasn’t long ago, but I’ll bet that most of us will have to think hard about the last time we unleashed our inner Leonardo da Vinci.
Mindful drawing can be completed in 10 minutes or less. and it’s a great way to clear your mind and flex those creative muscles. Not sure where to start? The National Gallery of Art put together this excellent mindful drawing guide with various prompts and tips for drawing with intent.
If you find yourself getting frustrated by your artistic abilities, then consider picking up a mindfulness coloring book.
Mindfulness Exercise 4: Mindful Walking
For those who find walking meditation intimidating, look no further than mindful walking. The beauty of mindful walking is that there is no one way to do it right. The goal is simply to be aware of your surroundings while moving through your surroundings (preferably outside in nature).
Some people may refer to this type of walking as sensory walking. All you really have to do is tune into your five senses as you move through a space, whether indoors or out. Beyond the mental benefits, walking is also a great low impact exercise that can boost physical fitness. However, be sure to consult with a physician before beginning any new exercise routine.
Find Your Calm at Harbour’s Edge
At Harbour’s Edge, a senior living community in Delray Beach, Florida, we believe in the power of multidimensional wellness to help our residents live healthier and happier lives. Residents have the option to take part in a wellness review and develop a personalized plan. Our location along the Intracoastal Waterway also allows for plenty of lush scenery in which to enjoy your mindful experiences.
Contact us today or complete the form below to learn more about what your life could be like at Harbour’s Edge.