How You Can Integrate More Mindfulness In Your Daily Life

You have probably heard about the virtues of mindfulness. Maybe you’ve even taken steps to practice meditation or acknowledge gratitude more often.

But mindfulness doesn’t need to be this formal, time-consuming process. Instead, simply prioritizing being more present in everyday life can make a significant difference in how you feel. Best of all? Mindfulness tends to compound itself. That means the more you can practice it, the easier (and more effective) it tends to be.

Here are some daily mindfulness tips you can try:

Engage in Single-Task Focusing

Do you pride yourself on being an excellent multitasker? As it turns on, you may not be as successful at it as you think you are. In fact, research shows that just about 2.5% of people multitask effectively. For most people, multitasking coincides with weaker performance and significantly higher distractibility.

Breaking a multitasking mindset can be challenging. But you can start by identifying small activities in your daily routine.

For example, consider doing the dishes as thoughtfully and consciously as possible. Or, the next time you brush your teeth, really hone in on the sensations of the task at hand. At first, this intentional shift may feel awkward (or dramatic), but this practice can help you appreciate life’s necessary chores and reinforce a positive self-care mentality.

Practice Active Listening

We often don’t realize how distracted we are in our interactions with others. Think about it. When was the last time you truly gave someone your undivided attention? When was the last time you had a deep, meaningful conversation without any distractions?

If you can’t remember, then it’s probably time to consider how well you actually listen to others. Active listening is a skill rooted in mindfulness, empathy, and compassion. When you actively listen to someone, you aim to understand them as much as possible. You strive to be validating and supportive. And if you don’t understand something, you ask clarifying questions until you do understand.

Take Deep Breaths

There are many benefits of formal meditation. But when time feels pressing and things are overwhelming, there’s something powerfully influential about taking a moment to breathe.

Research shows that just a few minutes of diaphragmatic breathing can reduce stress and promote a state of relaxation. Deep breaths also help stabilize the release of the stress hormone, cortisol, in the body. To start, simply inhale through your nose as deeply as you can and hold for 2-4 counts. Then, using your mouth, exhale all the air and hold for another 2-4 counts. Repeat as many times as necessary.

Engage in Mindful Eating

Do you typically rush through lunch while answering work emails? Do you watch TV while scarfing down dinner? These behaviors aren’t inherently wrong (and most of us are guilty of doing them), but this pattern can exacerbate stress and perpetuate problems with overeating or emotional eating.

Commit to having at least one mindful meal each day. When you do this, pay attention to what you eat, chew slowly, and savor the experience as much as possible. Notice how your body feels consuming different foods and drinks. Aim to stop eating once you feel yourself getting full.

Designate Gratitude Routines

Practicing gratitude is one of the best coping skills you can add to your daily routine. It’s free, accessible to anyone, and doesn’t require any real prep work.

That said, even though most people know it’s important, they still struggle to do it. If that’s the case for you, consider designating a certain time of day, location, or activity to “focus” on your gratitude.

For example, you might tell yourself that every time you drive past a specific intersection, you will mentally tell yourself three things you feel grateful for. Or, you might say that when you pour your cup of morning coffee, you’ll tell your spouse why you love them. Making these paired associations can hold you accountable to your gratitude goals!

Remind Yourself What You Can’t Control

At the end of the day, so much of mindfulness comes down to recognizing what you can’t change, fix, or control. And as you probably know, many situations fall into that category!

That said, it can still be helpful to regularly ask yourself: What’s in my control right now? What actions can I focus on doing? What’s NOT in my control? What do I need to accept might not happen on my terms? 

Final Thoughts on Implementing More Mindfulness

Mindfulness can improve your physical and emotional health. It’s a wonderful antidote for depression, anxiety, and many other mental health issues. In addition, focusing on the present moment allows you to truly enjoy life for what it is.

That said, building a mindfulness routine isn’t always easy. Busy schedules, low self-esteem, trauma, and struggles with control or perfectionism make it challenging to stay in the moment.

Therapy can help. Together, we can work on the obstacles preventing you from feeling “present” in your life. We can also discuss viable strategies for implementing mindfulness and reducing stress. Contact me today to learn more!

4601 Spicewood Springs Road Building 3, Suite 200
Austin, TX 78759
(512) 988-3363

Got Questions?
Send a Message!

By submitting this form via this web portal, you acknowledge and accept the risks of communicating your health information via this unencrypted email and electronic messaging and wish to continue despite those risks. By clicking "Yes, I want to submit this form" you agree to hold Brighter Vision harmless for unauthorized use, disclosure, or access of your protected health information sent via this electronic means.