7 Simple Mindfulness Activities You Can Try at Home to Declutter Your Mind
Do you have trouble quieting your mind? Have you tried multiple techniques for coaxing your mind into that sense of peace and calm with no luck? It can be difficult to declutter the mind in a stress-filled world, but it is possible, with mindfulness.
Mindfulness is a state of mind in which you focus solely on the present moment. It’s not about multitasking. It’s about doing things with 100% of your attention and focus.
While that may sound simple, it can be challenging.
We live in a world filled with noise. There seems to be no escape from it. There is a solution - one that can help you manage the chaos and cut down on the noise of life, and it's simpler than you might think.
The solution is mindfulness. If stress and anxiety have taken over your life and you spend your days exhausted, uptight, and harried, there is a better way. Studies have shown that even a few minutes spent in meditation or a few moments of mindfulness, can instantly restore that sense of peace and calm.
Practicing mindfulness can help you live your life in a healthier manner, helping you feel more relaxed, and peaceful throughout the day.
You can practice mindfulness anytime something upsetting happens or anytime you become aware of any internal tension. Just like exercise is good for your body, mindfulness is good for the mind, body, and spirit.
Mindfulness will leave you feeling energized and refreshed and super productive, which is a great way to spend your day. Imagine how good it will feel to get up every morning, feeling rested and refreshed and ready to tackle the day?
Try these 7 simple mindfulness activities, and judge for yourself.
Activity 1: Coffee or Tea Ceremony
In Zen monasteries, the Tea Room is a very sacred space. The Tea Room is used for silent contemplation and meditation and it works by helping one focus their awareness on the sounds, tastes, and experience of the ritual.
Preparing the coffee or tea is all part of the mindfulness process - including the preparation, the aroma and the simple act of drinking and tasting.
This kind of ceremony teaches you how to experience a mindful state through an everyday act. When it is done properly the Tea Ceremony enhances and awakens your awareness of the present moment, helping build listening skills, and helping to create a sense of stillness in the mind and body.
Coffee or Tea Ceremony Mindfulness Exercise
Start the practice by taking a deep breath in through your nose and out through your mouth. Express some gratitude for the moment by blessing those things and people you have in your life.
As you prepare the coffee or tea, notice the aroma or the scent of the coffee and pay attention to how the water sounds as it is being poured into the cup. Be mindfully aware even as you are stirring the cup or putting in milk, honey, or creme.
Now simply sit with your coffee or tea - and close your eyes. As you sip the drink, notice the sensation of the liquid on your tongue and pay attention to how you feel as you drink it. You can also keep your eyes open and stare into the liquid and see where your mind takes you. Enjoy every part of the process from the preparation of the coffee or tea to that last wonderful sip.
There is nothing more relaxing than taking a few minutes to enjoy a beautiful cup of coffee or tea and it is a great way to start the day. You can do this anytime you drink something, and you just might find it the most relaxing part of your day.
Activity 2: Basic Mindfulness Meditation
To be mindful is to be aware. In a mindfulness meditation, you practice the art of awareness. The more you practice this type of meditation, the easier it will get. You can start with as little as 5 minutes and work your way up to longer time frames.
- Begin by closing your eyes and getting into a comfortable position. Make sure you won't be disturbed.
- Take a deep breath in and drink in the calm. Imagine your muscles melting away.
- Now take a moment to focus on your thoughts. What is it that you are focusing on right now? Be honest with yourself, it’s OK if there are thoughts running through your mind. If you sense a thought, simply acknowledge it and dismiss it.
- Begin noticing the sights, sounds, and smells all around you. Become mindful of your surroundings. Notice what you see, sense or feel. If you are inside, listen for the sounds that your home makes, like the running of the air conditioner. You can even tune into the sound of your breathing. If you are outside, listen to the sounds of the birds or the feel of the wind.
- With your eyes closed, you can notice things more clearly. Notice what you see with your eyes closed. You may notice subtle shapes in the darkness or even see blobs of color moving around.
- If you want to deepen your awareness, you must be willing to observe without judgment.
- Become mindful of anything you notice and sit in the silence. Stay present in the moment for as long as you like.
Activity 3: Body Scan Meditation
This is a great meditation to do if you feel stressed or anxious. Scanning the body can help you identify any areas in the body that may be holding onto stress.
- Start by taking a couple of deep breaths. Thank your breath. Feel your breath moving through your body, cleansing it and healing it.
- Begin to sense what your body needs from you at this moment in time.
- Thank your body now and tell it how much you appreciate it. You can even go up and down your body, thanking your feet, your legs, your stomach, your chest, your arms, your hands, your neck and shoulders, and your head. Notice any sensations or how the body responds to your emotions.
- Now continue breathing, and begin to scan the body, from your feet all the up to your head. Notice how your feet feel at this moment. You may notice tingling as well. Continue moving up to your ankles and legs, noticing any sensations. Notice how the energy feels in each area of the body. If you feel any tightness, envision the area softening and loosening with each inhale.
- Work your way up your body, scanning for any areas that seem out of sync. If you experience any tightness, imagine you are sending a beautiful white light into your body as you breathe in. Imagine the breath is infusing your cells and your organs with love.
- Finish by scanning the head and the face. Notice how your skin feels and if it is supple or tight. Keep tuning into your energy and acknowledging your body for how amazing it is.
Activity 4: Mindfulness Through an Everyday Activity
The truth is the art of mindfulness can be practiced anytime and through any activity. For example, you can practice mindfulness while taking a shower. The next time you shower, try tuning in to all of those beautiful sensations while you shower.
Notice the feel of the water as it rolls off your skin. Take your time lathering yourself up with soap and really enjoy the process.
Notice how good it feels to cleanse the body, just like you cleanse your mind. Focus solely on the feelings and sensations you experience in the shower. This isn’t the time to run through your daily task list in your mind. When you exit the shower, take your time drying yourself and applying lotion. Really enjoy the experience of the shower.
You can also wash dishes mindfully, or even play with your pet mindfully.
Activity 5: Take a Mindful Walk
Mindful walking is a great opportunity to refresh your mind and body. Mindful walking involves walking and tuning into the environment all around you. It involves walking with the intention to quiet your mind. As you walk, try tuning in to all those things around you such as the feel of the air on your skin, the sound of your feet hitting the pavement, or the aromas of plants and flowers.
Keep shifting your awareness and tuning into the environment. Notice the subtle colors of the leaves on trees and how hard or soft the ground is. Walk silently, with 100% of your focus. If you find your mind wandering, simply redirect your focus and pay attention to what is happening all around you. Mindful walking is a wonderful way to refresh the mind and body.
Activity 6: Mindful Breathing Practice
Mindful breathing is another great way to calm the mind. There are many techniques to choose from. One of the simplest is to simply count the breaths.
Try sitting down and closing your eyes and breathing deeply, all the way down into the lower belly. Count to one on the inhale, and two on the exhale. Focus solely on the process of breathing, and nothing else. You might be surprised at how soothing breathing deeply can really be.
Keep counting until you feel that sense of peace and calm taking over.
Activity 7: Mantra Meditation
A mantra meditation involves repeating a simple word or phrase as you breathe in and out. A couple of great phrases to repeat are phrases like peace or love. For example, you could say, peace, I am peace or love, I am love.
You can also choose a short prayer or choose a word that has some kind of special meaning for you.
- Sit quietly in a comfortable position and close your eyes.
- Breathe slowly and naturally and as you do, repeat your focus word in your mind as you inhale and exhale. For example, you could repeat peace on the inhale, and I am peace on the exhale.
- Don't get discouraged if your mind strays, simply refocus your energy by silently repeating your focus word.
- Continue this practice for as long as you desire.
- Sit for a moment before standing to gather your thoughts.
While these short activities may seem simple, they can be very healing and restorative helping you feel calmer and more relaxed throughout your day. If you’re looking for ways to be more mindful and receive personalized guidance and coaching, browse our instructors today. Our coaches are here to help you find peace and practice mindfulness, all on your time, your terms.
By Leslie Riopel