“Mindfulness is a way of befriending ourselves and our experience.” — JON KABAT-ZINN
Guys, this week, I hit my limit. I am ready for winter to make it's exit. I am over the sickness, over the freezing cold, the rain, and the grey skies. Cabin fever + kids don't make for a great mix in our home and tensions can get pretty high. If you're feeling the same way, I have a little mindfulness exercise for you.
Settle in for a moment and let’s embrace it. Promise not to keep you long…
Find a comfortable seat in a chair, the floor, or lie down. You can close your eyes or keep them softly open.
Notice the connection of your body to the floor. Notice your feet, if you are seated in a chair. Notice your back body, if you are lying down. Feel the support of the earth as it meets you.
Notice your breath. Don’t change it. Just notice. Where does your breath come from within your body? What happens when you start to notice your breath?
Take a few deep breaths, holding for a second at the top of each inhale and then exhaling for longer than your inhale.
If thoughts arise (and they will) imagine that they are each represented by cars. Let these thoughts drive away and then come back to the moment. Your feet on the floor. Your back on the earth. Don’t get into the car, just let it pass. And, if you do get in the car, notice, unbuckle your seatbelt, and step out of the passenger side.
Let go of whatever you expect this experience to look like or feel like. Just be in it.
Breathe. Notice your breath.
Notice the earth.
And, when you’re ready, slowly open your eyes.
When you are finished, take a moment to notice how this made you feel. (You can even comment below!)
This exercise can be condensed into a minute, or extended for as long as you want. Even taking one minute a day to be aware, to pay attention on purpose, can change our perspective.
Bonus: You can do this with kids too (ages 6 +) who are interested in mindfulness.