Mindfulness is all about being in the present moment and only the present moment. When you are being mindful, you focus on what you are doing or thinking right now, while not worrying about the future or dwelling on the past.
Mindfulness can be used in many areas of your life, from helping you to lose weight, to re-gaining your focus on important work projects.
Living 24 hours with mindfulness is more worthwhile than living 100 years without it.
Being mindful is important for your mental, emotional, and physical health.
One specific method of being more mindful is through meditation. Mindfulness and meditation combined will help you to be a happier, calmer, more fulfilled, and balanced person. Here are some things to know about mindfulness meditation.
What is Mindfulness Meditation?
Let’s first talk about what mindfulness meditation is and how it can help you.
We know that mindfulness is a way of being, thinking, and living in the moment.
For example, if you are eating a meal, you focus only on what you’re eating, its textures, flavors, and sensations. You aren’t watching TV or thinking about your budget meeting. Your only thoughts are about the food in your mouth.
This kind of focus can also be used with meditation.
Mindfulness takes practice, especially during a busy day when your negative thoughts and stressful situations creep up in your mind constantly. This is why it is so helpful to start by practicing meditation.
How to Start Meditating
Instead of stressing yourself out with using mindfulness and meditation at the same time, start slow with basic meditating.
Find yourself a quiet space where you can completely focus on meditation. This can be your bedroom at night before bed, or in any quiet room.
Basically, meditating can be done anywhere you can sit comfortably with your eyes closed for a period of time.
Start your meditation by focusing on your breathing and only your breathing. Think about taking in each breath and letting it out. If your mind wanders to other thoughts, gently release those thoughts and re-focus on your breath.
This simple act will help you to retrain your mind to think about just one thing, which is the essence of both meditation and mindfulness.
Using Mindfulness With Meditation
Once you get used to sitting quietly and clearing your mind of all those nagging thoughts and thinking about your breathing, only then start the practice of mindfulness.
Mindfulness allows you to focus on the present moment.
Once you have the breathing practice mastered, choose just one thought to focus on.
That is all that is happening in this current moment.
This is how mindfulness meditation works.
The Benefits of Mindfulness Meditation
Before we talk about more tips to help you with mindfulness meditation, let’s look at why you should start this practice in the first place.
There are actually many advantages to mindfulness meditation, from lowering your stress level to helping with your mind’s focus, memory, and concentration.
Mindfulness meditation can even help your physical health.
Let’s look at some of the benefits of mindfulness meditation.
One of the most common reasons people use mindfulness meditation is to help reduce their stress level. When you start meditating and living in the present with mindfulness, you learn how to think about things differently.
While it isn’t going to magically get rid of all those stressful situations and people in your life, it helps you to deal with them better.
You are able to develop a healthy coping mechanism where you understand and appreciate things for what they are, and not dwell on how much worse they could be.
It truly is remarkable how helpful mindful meditation is for your overall stress and anxiety.
If you struggle with remembering things on a day to day basis, it might be because of how much you’re trying to keep track of in your mind.
Memory issues are also often linked to negative thoughts and overthinking. When you start the bad habit of overthinking, it tends to lead to over-analyzing things as well.
This is only going to make everything more stressful and frustrating for you.
When you begin a mindfulness meditation practice, you will be able to easily focus on one thing at a time, and your memory will improve as well.
Better Focus and Concentration
Other cognitive functions can also be improved with meditation, including your focus and concentration.
Once again, you are changing the way you think about things, developing positive attitudes like acceptance, appreciation and gratitude, patience, and nonjudgment. This in turn allows you to focus on whatever is happening in the present moment, instead of trying to think about too many things at once.
With proper mindfulness and meditation, you are learning how to adapt to everything around you, let go of the negative emotions, and appreciate all of the positivity in your life.
This practice is very fulfilling and improves your overall focus which in turn can help with work, school, or any goals you are trying to achieve.
Lower Blood Pressure
Mindfulness meditation has physical benefits as well, like lowering your blood pressure. Things like stress, anxiety, and lack of focus can overwhelm your mind, and actually have a negative effect on your body.
When you start meditating and using mindfulness in your daily life, you will feel less stressed and overwhelmed, which can then help your blood pressure to lower.
Let’s not forget about the benefits of mindful eating and weight loss!
Mindfulness isn’t just done in a meditation session but throughout the day. By living more in the present, you can also focus on what’s good for your body, by starting with mindful eating.
This is when you truly think about your food choices and savor each meal, instead of being distracted and just grabbing any snack and scarfing it down without thinking twice about it.
Through mindful eating, you learn to notice the signs of actual hunger and not eat out of boredom or to feed your emotions. Over time, you will notice that your eating habits change, which ultimately leads to weight loss.
Finally, all of these benefits can help you in the future. You become more successful by being less stressed and more focused on the task at hand.
You stop trying to multi-task and become a “unitasker”, which really does wonders for your psyche and your ability to get things done, and done well.
Everything you learn through mindfulness meditation is going to help you in all your future endeavors.
If you would like more tips on using Mindfulness Meditation in your life, join me in our FREE Facebook Group “The Wellness Lounge for Women”
How to Start Doing Mindfulness Meditation
Now that you’ve had a brief introduction into what mindfulness meditation is and how it works, let’s go a little deeper into the actual practice.
We’ll also talk about some helpful methods, tips, and tricks that can help you if you’re new to meditation.
Where to Meditate
As mentioned in the previous section, start your practice by choosing the best time and place for your meditation.
Schedule a time of the day when nobody else is home or when you have few distractions, because any little distraction, from a knock on the door to a cell phone ringing, is going to break your meditation.
It’s best to wait until the kids are at school or asleep, your significant other is otherwise engaged, and you can let your dog outside for a bit.
Plan on 10-15 minutes to start with. Choose a place in the house where you can sit quietly and close your eyes.
Eventually, meditation can be practiced in any place you find relaxing, from driving to work to going for a walk. Initially, however, you will want to practice with your eyes closed, so choose your bedroom, living room, or even on your patio if it is quiet and peaceful.
Sit in your chosen location with your eyes closed and in a relaxed position. It should be a comfortable position where you can be still.
Keep your back straight and hands on your lap.
What to Focus On
Once you have gotten into the most comfortable position, you can start your mindfulness meditation.
Focus on your breathing first, clear your mind of all distractions, stressful situations, plans, and schedules. Put your to-do list away and watch your negative feelings and thoughts float away on an imaginary cloud.
Once you are only thinking about your breath, and your mind is clear, you can start the mindfulness portion.
This is when you focus on just one thing, one thought, or one scenario. You are being mindful about the present, so it can be as simple as thinking about the act of meditation or perhaps a scent you smell in the air.
What you focus on is not as important as the act of meditation to relax your body and mind.
Find a Singular Object
It may help to focus on a single object with your eyes opened or closed.
If you want to close your eyes, get a small object that is easy to hold in your hand. Close your eyes and hold this object, touching its details and curves, focusing on the sensations, shape, and size, and not on any other thoughts that try to creep in. I will often use a smooth rock or crystal to help me focus.
You can also choose a visual object, such as focusing on a painting on the wall or placing an object right in front of you. The flickering flame of a lit candle also works well.
Look at the colors, textures, and design of that object. What you are doing is training your mind to release all other thoughts and focus on one singular thing.
Most importantly, remember to always be patient with yourself.
Clearing your mind and having a singular focus isn’t always easy and often takes years of practice.
You have lived all these years trying to multi-task, do everything at once, think about every little thing that could go wrong, making plans and schedules, and to-do lists. It will take some time to get used to just relaxing and being in the moment.
Incorporate Essential Oils With Your Meditation
Personally, I find using essential oils in my meditation practice to be very calming and can be very helpful, especially when you are just starting to practice mindfulness meditation.
When you smell a relaxing scent, your mind can more easily focus on mindfulness, and certain scents can actually help you relax even further.
Good Essential Oils to Use
You can use any oils you want, but there are some that are good for relaxing and calming the mind. Here is a list of some essential oils you may want to try.
One of the best and most relaxing essential oil scents is lavender. Lavender is perfect for stress relief, lowering anxiety, and helping your mind and body to fully relax. This is the perfect oil to use in your mindfulness meditation as this scent isn’t too strong or overbearing.
You can also try lemon, which is especially good when you are doing mindfulness meditation in the morning or when you want to be a little more alert. This fresh scent also helps with improving your mood, reducing allergies, and helping your respiratory system.
Peppermint is a bit of a stronger scent, but you can dilute it or put a little less into your diffuser. This oil is good for oral health, respiratory support, focus, and concentration. Like lemon, it is also a great mood lifter.
Rose is a light floral scent that will calm and relax your mind, while also helping your body to relax. This is a great oil to use if you are a beginner, and it can easily be mixed with some of the other scents.
Mindfulness meditation has amazing benefits for your mind, body, and spirit. I hope you will give it a try.
If you would like more essential oil tips, join me in our FREE Facebook Group
“The Wellness Lounge for Women”
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