By Haley Schuster, OMS-II, ATSU-KCOM
- Take a mindfulness walk
- While walking, practice mindfulness by noting what you hear, see, feel, and smell. With each step, notice how your body feels and moves. Reflect on what you observed on your walk that you haven’t felt before.
- Practice square breathing
- Inhale through your nose for a 4 count. Hold for a 4 count. Exhale through your mouth for a 4 count. Hold for a 4 count. Repeat 4 times.
- Do a guided mediation
- Search YouTube or download a meditation app such as Insight Timer.
- Be present while enjoying a snack or meal
- For one bite, stop and pause. Notice how the food looks and smells. Imagine what it tastes like and how it makes you feel. Then, place the food in your mouth. Notice the texture, temperature, and taste and how they change as you chew.
- Perform a body scan
- Start with your feet and work your way up your body noticing the pleasant and unpleasant physical sensations throughout. Spend 15 seconds to 1 minute on each body part.
Many of these strategies take as little as 1-5 minutes. They can be implemented while on a lunch break, walking from your car into school or work, or even sitting at a desk. Just like exercise, mindfulness takes practice and is best when done on a routine basis to achieve the best results. Mindfulness has been shown to improve anxiety, depression, memory, focus, and one’s ability to manage emotions and stressful situations.
Therapist Aid. (2017b, October 27). What is Mindfulness?. Therapist Aid. https://www.therapistaid.com/therapy-worksheet/what-is-mindfulness