Not too long ago, I walked into a restaurant only to see that 90% of all of the people in it were staring at their phones; even when sitting with others. It made me a little sad to see so many moments being missed, but also got me thinking about how often our minds are out of sync with our bodies. How often are we sitting with a friend, watching a TV programme, eating a meal or even participating in a class while thinking about something else? Mindfulness is more about just about being present as a way to avoid anxiety (fear of the future) or depression (focus on the past). It’s also that little something “extra” that will give a flavor a boost, a workout that extra “something” and that conversation more depth. Today, I want to challenge all of you to step into your moments a little deeper by doing the following four things for the next week.
1. Put your phone down for the first 30 minutes with someone. It’s normal to check your phone here and there (or at least normalised) but try and sit with the person in front of you for a full half hour before you look at your phone and take note at how much more you connect. Look at them in their eyes, pay attention to their expressions and really listen to what they are saying.2. Work your mind out. When in class, bring your focus to your body. Pay attention to where you’re moving, how you’re bending, how you feel and what it is that you want out of your session. They have done studies that suggest this kind of mind/body focus actually enhances the physical benefits of your workout.3. Prepare ahead of time. Make a pact to shut everything down an hour earlier in the evening and spend that extra hour engaging in something that will enhance your life or relationships. Talk to those around you, read a good book or take a long, hot bath and close your eyes and visualize something you want to experience such as a bucket list holiday or an incredible seaside massage.4. Remember that you are in control of technology. Turn the ringer off and give yourself an allotted amount of time to look at Instagram and all of your social media channels. See your time as “recess” and not an “obsession”. Just looking at it from this perspective will serve as a massive eye-opener for some.
Do you feel a body-mind disconnect?