Welcome to Monday folks! For today, all we’re going to do is focus on transitions. When I say transitions I mean long or short, like your commute to work, walking to your next meeting, grabbing lunch or refilling your water bottle. When you’re in a period of transition, try to just focus on the change in direction and movement in your brain and body. Normally we’re so caught up in our own thoughts (or cell phones) to pay attention to the process of change while moving from one activity to the next. By letting yourself focus on the transition, when you arrive at your next destination you may find that you’re a little more present and prepared!
During the day we can get caught up with the hustle and bustle of activity. Try adding a reminder in your phone to check in with yourself. It could be just a moment that you focus on the breath, or even just look away from the computer. If you really want to take the check in a step further, use it as an excuse to take a lap around the office, get some hot tea and breathe for a moment. There are plenty of applications out there that you can install on your computer to remind you to look away every 15 minutes, or get out of your chair every hour. Or, if there’s a regular sound in your office, say, the doorbell, use that as a reminder to take a deep breath and check in with how things are going.
We all have to do chores and they’re rarely fun. Unless you love washing dishes (secretly, I do) it can really be a chore to take on chores. Next time you’re getting ready to work some household chores, take a moment to really connect with the chore. If you’re washing dishes, enjoy the feeling of the hot water and the circular motion and how it feels to rinse off the grime. If you’re sweeping the floors take your time to feel how your body takes one each movement. Folding the laundry? Take in the scent and focus on how each fold makes that shirt into the perfect size for your drawer. Whatever the chore is, enjoy the details of the chore. Who knows, you may discover you adore cleaning the bathroom!
Happy Monday! For this mindful Monday, we’re going to focus on tomorrow morning instead of today. Tomorrow, set a second alarm (just in case) and when you wake up, keep your eyes closed. Instead of reaching for that shiny light box of a phone you have acting as your alarm clock and checking instagram, hit “off”, and let it be a slow wake up. Take in the smells, the sounds, the feeling of your sheets. Wiggle your toes and fingers and try out some long stretches while happily under the covers. Take your time and relish in the morning hours before the busyness of your day begins.
Today is a world full of pretty amazing note-taking cloud-based tools. With all that click-clacking (and, hitting other fun tabs) you may realize you’re not paying as much attention to your meetings or brain with the furious typing. Instead of reaching for your fully charged laptop, grab a scratch pad and take notes by hand. There will be two wonderful things that could happen. First, you may pay better attention to your meetings than expected and secondly, you’ll get to work on your handwriting skills. Get writing!
Monday is the day that we can dread, or, a day that can energize us and start the week off right. One thing that could really set things off on the right foot is taking the time to slow down and make dinner. The process of finding a recipe online, from your mother, or reusing an oldie but goodie, purchasing the ingredients, methodically chopping, sautéing, stirring, roasting then plating can be therapeutic in its details. By really giving into the process and staying present during each step, you may find the food tasting better than grabbing takeout on your way home from work. It can take a little bit longer, but there’s something about sitting down to a meal you prepared for yourself. For some reason it tastes better!
We hear it in yoga all the time, to set an intention for your practice. And if you haven’t done yoga before, consider yourself warned! However, setting an intention for your practice, can apply to your day, too. Some folks try doing these each morning when they wake up, but for this week you could try just setting an intention for your day. Something that can help set it is writing it down. Maybe you want to focus on your breath today, or maybe you want to simply focus on being today. By writing it down (or saying it to yourself), you’re giving yourself a bit of a guiding light to focus your energy and efforts for the day. It’s a nice way to keep perspective.
Enjoy setting an intention!