Too often, we go through life on autopilot, not paying attention to the moments and experiences that make it up.
We’re so focused on reaching our goals or the next finish line that we forget to enjoy our accomplishments, learn from our mistakes, and feel all the feels of our journey.
And the lack of attentiveness to the events and experiences in a busy life can lead to unhappiness, missed opportunities, more stress, and even physical pain.
Read on if you’re ready to turn off the autopilot and start actively engaging with your daily life again. This blog post will discuss tips for becoming more mindful and learning to enjoy the moment!
8 Tips to Increase Your Awareness
Being mindful means having an awareness of what’s occurring in the here and now – within yourself and your immediate environment – with acceptance and nonjudgement. It’s the ability to experience and be fully present with who you’re with or in what you’re doing.
Follow these tips to begin experiencing the benefits of mindfulness and improve your quality of life.
1. “Forget” what you know.
One way to become more mindful is to start approaching life with a beginner’s mind. This means being open minded and willing to try new things without bias or preconceived notions.
It’s pretending like you’re learning or experiencing something for the first time. It’s paying attention to and savoring what you see, hear, feel, taste, or smell as if you’ve not sensed it before.
It can be easy to get stuck in our ways, become close-minded, and think, “been there, done that.”
Yet by opening ourselves up to new possibilities, reexperiencing old ones, and using our senses fully as we journey through life, we can continue learning and growing.
2. Practice meditation or mindfulness exercises.
A mindful meditation practice can help you learn to focus your attention on the present moment and become more aware of your thoughts, feelings, and surroundings.
Mindfulness practices can also help you become less reactive to stressful situations and better manage difficult emotions.
Meditating doesn’t mean you have to sit your ass on the floor for hours at a time (although you can if you want to!).
There are many different ways to meditate. Some people prefer sitting or lying down in a quiet place and focusing on their breath or other body sensations, while others may choose to walk mindfully in nature or listen to a guided meditation.
Find a method to try and start with just a few mindful moments. You can gradually increase the length of time you practice mindfulness meditation as you become more comfortable with the experience and the benefits of meditation.
3. Focus on now.
It’s essential to live in the present as much as possible. This means not dwelling on past mistakes or worrying about the future too much.
It means that when you’re at work, you focus on work. When you’re on a date, you focus on your date. When you’re exercising, you focus on the exercise. And when you eat, you focus on your food.
Focus on the here and now and experience what’s happening. Feel the emotions and physical sensations occurring in your body and consider why your specific reactions are happening.
Getting in touch with yourself and your surroundings can help you become more mindful, appreciate your life more, and elicit more positive emotions.
4. Ground yourself.
When you’re feeling anxious or stressed, grounding yourself can help you stay centered and focused.
Grounding increases your body awareness and connects you with the earth.
Ground yourself by walking barefoot on grass, digging your toes in the sand, your hands in the dirt, or grabbing a tree.
Perform a body scan and strive to release any pent-up stress as you work on grounding.
For example, feel the grass under your feet, then move to your legs, relax your muscles, and let the tension melt away. Continue up your torso, relax your arms and hands, shoulders and neck, and finally, your head and eyes.
Spend more time in nature and ground yourself whenever possible to help improve your mood, sleep, and relieve pain.
5. Record the good (and the not so good too).
Another way to enjoy the moments and experiences of life is to savor them.
This means taking the time to appreciate the good things that happen, both big and small. And learning from the not so great moments or events as well.
It can be helpful to keep a gratitude journal where you write down things you’re thankful for each day. But you don’t need to limit yourself there. Jot down anything that’s on your mind.
Make a video, audio, or visual record if writing isn’t your thing. Let your creativity flow.
Focusing on the positive can help you feel more happiness and satisfaction with your life while noting the not so good can help you learn from mistakes or prepare better the next time.
6. Put a pause on technology.
Technology has been a fantastic tool for us humans.
It’s changed how we live, from helping us communicate to keeping us entertained.
However, technology can also cause us to lose track of reality and disconnect from ourselves.
We spend so much time staring into screens that we don’t notice the world around us anymore.
The result? We lose touch with who we are and those we care about most. And we forget to take care of ourselves and our relationships.
So take a monthly weekend break or limit the daily hours you interact with your phone to experience what’s happening in your actual life surroundings.
7. Take care of yourself.
Sleep deprivation, poor diets, lack of exercise, alcohol usage, and money troubles are linked to anxiety, depression, chronic pain, and other mental health issues.
Taking care of your mental and physical health and getting your financial house in order will help you better manage your stress, moods, and emotions.
This means you’ll be able to focus more on the present and enjoy what’s in front of you.
Besides engaging in the practice of mindfulness, taking care of “you” involves:
- Getting enough sleep every night.
- Avoiding or at least decreasing alcohol consumption.
- Eating a balanced (think colorful) diet and being mindful during meals.
- Moving your body more and sitting less.
- Handling your money matters.
- Talking to someone or enlisting the assistance of a mentor or coach when you need help.
8. Let it go.
Life doesn’t always go smoothly. You’ve made mistakes and will continue to make them. But if you let that get to you, you won’t be able to enjoy the simple pleasures of everyday life.
You might find yourself obsessing over past problems, worrying about future ones, or feeling overwhelmed by everything happening around you.
This robs your attention and keeps you from enjoying precious moments with people you care about and experience that can enrich your life.
Instead, try releasing negative emotions and letting things go.
Accepting responsibility is part of growing up. It’s okay to admit you were wrong or did something you’re not proud of.
But instead of dwelling on what you cannot change, use this moment to learn from it and move forward.
Becoming more mindful takes time and practice, and it requires introspection, mental and physical awareness, and self-discipline.
Mindful living isn’t easy. But it brings great rewards.
Mindfulness helps us become aware of what’s going on in and outside of ourselves, allowing us to see the world as it is rather than through the lens of our thoughts and feelings.
It gives us the ability to control our behavior and emotions and better enjoy other people and surroundings.
And it makes us happier and healthier.
Start a mindful practice today to improve your life, find more balance, and experience more joy.