My theme for March is mindfulness.
Although its roots go back to Buddhist meditation, mindfulness has made its way into American mainstream in the last several years. Thanks to countless studies, which have documented the physical and mental benefits of mindfulness, schools, prisons, hospitals and more have now adapted mindfulness programs into their offerings.
Although you may have heard the term a thousand times, do you really understand what it means to be mindful and how to incorporate mindfulness into your daily life? Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment. It means living a life filled with intention where you are present in each moment and not judging or placing labels on yourself or your experiences.
Maybe you already knew what mindfulness means, but do you know how to incorporate it into your daily life? Being mindful does not mean you have to sit in lotus pose in a silent meditation for 30 minutes everyday. You can cultivate mindfulness in your regular daily routine by simply being present and tuning in to the sensations, the thoughts, the feelings and truly living life like it matters, each and every moment.
So, this month, I encourage you to focus on being more present in each of your daily tasks. Maybe it is a task as simple as brushing your teeth. I challenge you to notice —really notice— what you’re sensing in those few moments when you are standing in your bathroom brushing your teeth; the sights, sounds, and smells that ordinarily slip by without reaching your conscious awareness.
I am also going to be releasing a weekly 5 minute paddle meditation. For me, when I am paddling and practicing FloYo I am fully present— I am practicing mindful movements. I am focused on the moment, on the movement of my blade through the water, the placement of my body in each pose on the board. This is the reason I fell in love with SUP Yoga- unlike in a yoga studio where my mind could wander, when I was on a paddleboard I was forced to be mindful, to be present because when I wasn’t I would fall in the water!
I have put together a series of mindfulness meditations which are accompanied by paddle scenes. These 4 meditations will be released each Monday in March. I encourage you to try starting your week with these 5 minute meditations. And rest assured, I am not saying that you have to meditate every day to achieve mindfulness; however, I do think that incorporating a bit of meditation will help you discover what it feels like to use these mindfulness techniques to cope with the daily onslaught and the stress that comes with living in an extremely fast-paced, multi-tasking world. For me, the ultimate goal of practicing mindfulness is simply to give your attention fully to what you’re doing. You can work mindfully, parent mindfully, learn mindfully…heck, you can even exercise, eat and travel mindfully.
More on mindful travel coming soon!
The first Mindful Meditation will be released (and posted here) on March 5th. Have a mindful day!