Updated: Apr 3
Breakaway from perfection and find mindfulness instead. The key to many things is mindfulness, like: peace, living in the present moment and being intentional. It is a muscle that can be mastered over time with continuous practice. Mindfulness is a beautiful skill that can be used everywhere and anywhere. As we journey through yoga daily we have discovered 3 key components to embrace and practice mindfulness at all times. The best things in life come in threes (wink, wink).
Awareness of the body, mind and heart is essential. Honestly, awareness lies in the simplest forms. You can find awareness in bodily sensations. Are you holding your breath when working out? Do you walk fast when your mind is in a hurry? When you become upset do your shoulders get pulled up towards your ears? One of my favorite ways to ensure that I am being aware of my body and mind is checking to make sure I use the potty when I actually need to go. Often times we get so consumed with being "busy" that we hold our pee to wait for a "good time" to go. But, when we are fully aware we find time in the moment when we need it most, not later. I remind myself to be aware of my heart through visible check-ins. I give myself a thumbs up, down, or sideways to signal my mind and body how I am doing right now. It's the little things that make awareness a major part of peace.
Change is inevitable. If there is one lesson you get out of this reading it should be about change. If we shift our perspective about change from a negative light to a more positive one we would all be in good shape. We tend to dislike change. Some of us even resist change as a response to change. Nothing good lasts forever. Nothing bad lasts forever. When it rains (yes, sometimes it pours) we understand that sunshine or even a rainbow awaits us on the other side. And, when it is sunny we know that soon the leaves will turn and the season will change to a day filled with wintry nights. Nothing lasts forever! Taking the initiative to value living in the present moment encourages us to accept that change is inevitable. You will hear many yoga instructors say that the practice of yoga is equivalent to a series of new beginnings. Every day you bring a different body to the mat to practice with. When we start to trust the magic of new beginnings an entire new world opens up before us.
As long as you have breath you have purpose. A wise person once told me that for every moment that you are breathing you were absolutely meant to be on this earth to: make a difference, give a hug and be your best self. In the yoga world we encourage people to set intentions. But, what we fail to realize about intentions is that they aren't fulfilled unless we first value living intentionally. This means valuing the breath that fuels our body which then encourages our body to move freely. Freedom to move encourages creativity and mobility. When our body, mind and heart are encouraged to live with a purpose we are being intentional of our actions and thoughts. We can make a difference in ourselves with the matched desire to impact others. In stressful situations we often hold our breath without knowing cutting ourselves short from thinking and being clearly. Your breath is powerful, use it!
Mindfulness is Key!
The good news is that mindfulness lives within you. The better news is that it is never to late to start practicing. Start finding awareness, acknowledging change and breathing intentionally today.