Today marks the International Day for Happiness, and as you make your way through your Monday routine happiness may not be at the forefront of your mind. While many believe they’re in control of their lives, are you truly engaging with what life has to offer? Mindfulness expert Dana Zelicha has taken a look at how we manage our day-to-day, and is looking to get more people to switch off the ‘auto-pilot’ and put the public in the driver’s seat with seven steps to happiness.
If only for 10 minutes a day as a replacement for scrolling idly on social media between tasks, a few moments to stop and reflect on your day can help refocus the mind and put you back on track. Using “pockets of downtime” to your advantage can lead to increased self-assurance and productivity as you face your challenges head on.
Observe your thoughts
Focussing on breathing and taking note of where your thoughts take you can help you set its direction. Having your mind wander off topic can lead to feelings of unhappiness, and taking a moment to reassess can help give you a clear path.
Listen to your body
Pay attention to your aches, pains, groans and grumbles. Analyse what’s happening with your body, are you feeling hungry? Tired? Rightly recognising your ailments can help you address areas of stress, whether needing more rest or getting more exercise.
Label your emotions
Check-in with how you’re feeling. Loneliness, boredom, anxiety, stress and other negative emotions can occur just by letting your mind wander during a casual scroll on the phone. Discovering the links between what you’re doing and what emotions they’re triggering can help you tackle it and work past it. Giving a name to your pain is a very powerful tool.
Fix what isn’t working
Give an everyday chore a mindfulness twist. Approach the task with curiosity, observe your feelings through the experience and see if you pick up things you normally gloss over. You may find that you can take more enjoyment out of a simple task than you realise.
Find a friend
A ‘mindfulness buddy’ can help give you the platform to encourage and be encouraged to get more involved with mindful activities. While mindfulness may be something you’d expect to do alone, you could be surprised at the effects of having someone to support you. Checking in with each other can help you both on your way your exploring yourselves.
At least once a day, take the time to focus on your meal. Being fully present when eating can help your body receive more nutrients as you take more time to taste and chew your food properly. Rushing through a meal may feel like the right thing to do at a working lunch, but being mindful can help you make the most out of your food. Check in with your body to make sure you’re not over-eating will help stop that bloating feeling that’ll leave you sluggish through the day.
Dana Zelicha, mindfulness expert and founder of the Organizational Well Being Agency, OWBA, will be talking at the PA Life Training Day. To find out more on how you can get involved, you can click here
Any mindfulness tips of your own? Share them by tweeting @PALifeMag