Mindfulness is an ancient Buddhist meditation. Upon hearing the word “meditation”, a lot of us imagine a long-haired hippy, sat on a rug with his legs crossed. And it puts us off trying it!
But mindfulness can be done anywhere, any time and there are no crossed legs involved. Unless you want them to be!
I want to help you take your first step on the journey to being mindful so I’ve pulled together some excellent resources for you to use.
I know some of you may prefer guided meditations, whilst others would prefer to teach themselves which is why I have chosen a variety of apps, books, and downloads. Go ahead and read. Let me know what you think in the comments at the bottom.
“People who practice mindfulness meditation regularly report feeling less stressed and more emotionally balanced”
Tang, R. et al., 2014.
This blog offers a fantastic introduction to all-things-mindfulness so if you are just getting started, find out how you can apply it to your personal and professional life.
FreeMindfulness.org have multiple free downloads which you could save on to your phone or iPod so this website is great for those of you who might want to do some on-the-go mindfulness. I like to use these if I’m sat on a train. Please never ever listen to them whilst you’re driving though because they are very relaxing.
Headspace is a fabulous mindfulness app, which you can download for no cost. Within the app is ‘Take 10’ a free foundational course with ten guided mindfulness sessions, which you can use to train your mind to be positive and healthy. Andy Puddicombe is the founder and it is his soothing voice that leads you through each glorious ten-minute session.
Headspace is suitable for mindfulness beginners, as well as those of you who are more seasoned meditators. The exercises cover everyday activities like cooking and walking but they also support deeper issues like stress and relationship troubles. I really cannot recommend this app enough. It’s empowering and revitalising. It has really helped me to strengthen my own self-awareness and given me time to check-in with myself every day to make sure I’m getting what I need to live in the moment.
If you are new to mindfulness or need a bit of a refresher, then this lovely little book is for you. The two authors help you to understand your own mind; the way it thinks, feels and processes things. And with this understanding comes an appreciation of the present. It helps you to stop fretting about the future and instead become more productive and more positive.
This book is packed with clear and simple ways to get started with mindfulness, as well as exercises you can try yourself to help you live more mindfully. This gem is less than £10 on Amazon – get the book, you won’t regret it.
There are tonnes of mindfulness videos on YouTube so I have just picked one channel for today. Jeremy Woodall offers a series of guided meditations on his channel which help you go from “mind full” to “mindful”. His videos range in length so you can pick one that is right for you but you can also try a variety of exercises – from breath awareness to body scans.
Jeremy teaches you to focus on the present moment, to observe your thoughts and physical sensations non-judgementally. He has a lovely soft voice. It’s very relaxing so try not to fall asleep if you do one of his exercises. I’ve made this mistake myself a couple of times. Oops!
There you have it – four very different ways you can get started with mindfulness.
Have you tried mindfulness? Tell me about your experience in the comments.