3 Simple Ways to Be More Mindful
With March comes the beginning of spring, a time for new growth, new changes, and, unfortunately, new stress. When I was a high school teacher, the spring semester meant stress because of state testing.
For those of you in the business world, the spring, generally known as Q1 and Q2, undoubtedly comes with challenges as well. Many organizations use the spring for setting yearly quotas and reviewing sales pipelines, causing expectations and stress levels to rise.
Every day, employees across all industries face constant pressure to produce better results, often with less time and fewer resources. This pressure can lead to an unhealthy amount of stress at work that many unintentionally take home with them. So, how can mindfulness reduce the amount of stress carried home from work this spring season?
Here are 3 super simple strategies you can try anytime, anywhere, to be more mindful and less stressed.
1. Pay attention to your breath
It’s that easy. Have you taken a long, deep breath recently? Are you holding your breath in without even realizing it? Intentional, deep inhalations automatically lower your blood pressure and can help reduce stress. When you focus on the in and out of your breathing, you create space that can help you decide how you will respond to your stress instead of reacting to it.
2. Pay attention to your body
This requires a little more attention than noticing your breath. Practice by lifting your toes one by one and putting them down one by one, whether your sitting or standing, and even if you’re wearing shoes. Do a similar exercise by bringing each finger to your thumb, one by one. Focusing on specific body parts and actions like this help keep your attention away from negative thoughts or emotions you might be experiencing and can help your body relax.
3. Pay attention to a specific color
Again, this practice usually takes more focus but gets easier each time you try it. At the beginning of your day, pick a color. It can be any color or your favorite color. As you go through your day at work or even at home or running errands, notice when and where you see this color.
When you see it, just label it “blue” or whatever color you’ve chosen. If you’re feeling stressed or nervous and see your color, use it as a reminder to pause and take a deep breath. You don’t have to breathe deep every time you see it, just when you need a reminder to slow down.
Mindfulness is just a way to pay more attention to the present moment, without worrying about the past or the future. Try these 3 strategies to help reduce stress so you can experience more peace and joy at work and at home.
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