Mindfulness isn’t rocket science. It’s the simple, practical act of focusing on the present moment.
We often talk about the science-backed benefits of adopting a mindfulness practice; improved critical thinking, less anxiety, reduced depression, and improved emotional regulation.
Those are all phenomenal benefits.
What we don’t talk about as often are the simple, practical uses of mindfulness in our daily lives.
Mindfulness doesn’t just benefit folks who are trying to fix a problem, it benefits everyone.
Remember, human brains are designed to wander. There isn’t a single one of us out there who doesn’t have a wandering mind to some degree.
Mindfulness puts us back in the moment — and that’s where all the good stuff in life happens.
To that point, we can use mindfulness to actually enjoy our lives more.
Enjoying the Good Stuff
Think about some of the things that make you happy.
Friends and family are probably on that list. Maybe you have a hobby you are really passionate about. Perhaps you love to eat delicious foods.
All three of those can be enjoyed even more with a little mindfulness. Let’s break it down.
Community is Crucial
A tight-knit community might be the single most important thing we can have in our life.
Research suggests that the stronger our community, the longer our lives. Studies also show that strong relationships greatly improve our mental, physical, and emotional health.
It’s not necessarily quantity that matters here, but quality.
So, how do we build up strong, quality relationships? Well, mindfulness is definitely where we start.
When we are truly focused on the present moment we become better listeners and more in tune with those around us.
Think about the best dinner party you’ve been to, even if it was a while ago.
Was everyone on their phones? Of course not, everyone was probably actively engaged in conversation, exchanging ideas or sentiments and giving space to both listen and speak.
In other words, everyone was being mindful.
The next time you are with the ones you love, try to avoid all distractions and just be there with them.
As humans, we need passion in our lives to be happy. We know this.
Maybe it’s art, or video games, or being in nature; whatever it is we all have something we are passionate about.
Two things that help us engage with the things we love in life are focus and creativity.
As it so happens, mindfulness is the key that unlocks the door to our creativity and focus; the connection between these two cannot be ignored.
Mindfulness is a practical way to strengthen the parts of the brain responsible for imagination, originality, and expressiveness. They also improve our ability to focus attention and suppress distracting information.
Sounds like exactly what we need to pursue all the passion projects we want in our life.
Finally, we come to food. Everyone loves food.
How the heck is mindfulness going to make food better?
Think about how you usually eat your meals.
Is it in front of the tv or another screen? Do you throw down a quick lunch in your car while you’re on your way to your next activity?
The majority of us rarely just sit down and eat while doing nothing else. In fact, can you even remember the last time you tried this?
Mindful eating is just that; eating without doing anything else.
Even though you think you might enjoy your meals even more in front of the tv, the opposite is actually true.
When you give your brain a chance to focus only on your food, some real magic starts to happen.
You notice tastes and textures that you ordinarily wouldn’t. You connect with and appreciate your food on another level. And you practice healthier eating habits.
If you really love to eat, then the only way to truly enjoy your food is mindfully.
We could keep going on about all the things that make us happy in life, and how mindfulness can make them better.
But the point here is that mindfulness isn’t some obscure concept shrouded in mystery. Mindfulness is a simple, practical way to live a happier life.
We have a free guided mindfulness meditation for anyone who wants to start practicing today.