This post is sponsored by NOW Foods. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
So often in life we’re waiting for those big moments in life: weddings, births, vacations, graduations and more. These milestones are often looked forward to with lengthy countdowns and preparation. There is so much joy and gratitude in those momentous moments, but if we look carefully there so magic in our mundane everyday routine to experience as well.
With a little tweaking in our everyday perceptions, fine-tuning our observations and the addition of mindfulness into our everyday routines, there is so much sparkle to be found in the the ordinary. We’re so often on autopilot when doing every tasks that we don’t notice the world and people around us. Taking a pause to really think about what you’re doing and consider other perspectives can help you to be more present in these moments. Through mindfulness, you can cultivate new experience that can add some sparkle to those tedious activities and mundane moments. Whether it’s infusing gratitude into your day, engaging your senses more or taking a moment to see the world through another person or angle, being more mindful through your day can vastly change how you view the world around you.
The good news is that you don’t need a ton of extra time in your day to be more mindful or to practice meditation. Finding small periods of being truly present in your day can be incredibly beneficial to your mental and physical wellbeing. The following are some simple ideas to encourage you to inspire you to love the life you have through the mundane and momentous moments and everything in between.
How to Find Magic in the Mundane:
Cooking can be burdensome and tedious at times, but it can offer so many opportunities to practice mindfulness. When cooking and eating, try tuning into all your physical senses of smell, touch, sight taste, hearing, to fully immerse yourself to fully present in the moment. Does the food your preparing smell sweet, pungent, spicy? Is it smooth to touch or textured? Does the color change during preparation? Notice the distinct sounds (sizzle, boil, bubbling, etc.) when cooking. Observe the distinct differences of flavors in your ingredients.
Another path of mindfulness that can grow a deep sense of gratitude is thinking about the path of food from field to plate. Consider all the people and the land that nurtured and supported the food you are eating. From the natural wonders of sun, rain and pollination, to all those who help to get the food from farm to plate (farmers, packaging, truckers and grocery store stockers), it’s quite magnificent the complexity and community it takes to get the foods that we enjoy to our homes and on our plates.
When stress creeps in, taking a minute or two to practice breath meditation can work wonders. We all have heard someone say “take a deep breath” in moments of chaos for good reason. Breath meditation has been shown to reduce anxiety, improve focus, support more restful sleep and even support heart health. One of the easiest ways to practice breath meditation is to simply focus on the breath as it is. Shamatha, “breathing as is”, is a great beginner level practice that’s often referred to as the reset breath to help bring you back to the present moment. This practice can be done anywhere. I love taking a moment at lunch to help reset after a busy morning or even in the car pick up line or bus stop while waiting.
How To Practice Breath Meditation
To do it, sit or stand comfortably. Notice the weight of your body where it meets the ground. Sit or stand with a tall spine. Close your eyes or soften your gaze to a point in front of you. Notice your natural breath as it is (don’t feel as though you need to change it). Notice the rise and fall of your belly as you inhale and exhale. Take note of the sensation of breath as it travels through your nostrils – is it cool? is it warm? As your practice, your thoughts may wander as the brain is a busy place. Simply acknowledge them and return your focus back to your breath. For beginners, it may be helpful to choose a mantra to accompany your inhale and exhales (for examples, “I am” on an inhale, and “calm, safe, love or etc.” on an exhale). Placing a hand on the heart and belly can be a great way to connect deeper to your breath as well.
As adults, we often forget the delight that can be found in play. Play can be so cathartic and it’s important to remember that not everything needs to be taken seriously. Notice the world around you like a child. The feeling of the breeze as it whips through your hair, the sound of laughter, joyful movement, tiny ants as they walk across the sidewalk. Embrace your inner child.
Morning Coffee or Tea Meditation
Finding magic in the mundane is easier when you connect it with something you do daily. Taking a coffee or tea mindful break is a simple and quick (under 5 minutes) way to add mindfulness to your mornings.
How to do Tea or Coffee Meditation:
Sit in a comfortable area. Hold your cup with both of your hands and use your senses to notice the different sensations: the warmth on your hands, the texture of your mug, the smell radiating from your cup. Pause and notice how your body responds to these stimuli. Finally, take that first sip and linger on the taste and sensations.
Finding moments in the day to connect with nature can be a wonderful way to find sublime in mundane moments. Whether your grabbing the mail, walking to the bus stop or taking a walk, if possible take a break to savor the beauty of nature. If possible, take off your shoes and feel the earth beneath your feet. Feel the warmth of the sun or coolness of a breeze. Marvel as bees and flies buzz around you. Listen for the sounds of birds chirping or frogs croaking. Take in the wide array of colors and textures around you.
Connecting with Loved Ones
With so many things around us always fighting for our attention and time it can be easy to go through the daily motions without really connecting with those around us. Take time daily to truly disconnect from those things that tether us, whether it’s technology or to-do lists, and drop into a moment of connection with loved ones. Take a moment to fully immerse yourself in the moment and be present. Notice your partner/loved one, look them in the eye and truly listen and converse with your entire attention.
Waiting in Line At The Store
Waiting in line can sometimes feel like a waste of time, but I love to take it as a chance to stop and enjoy a moment of not having to do anything. Whether you take that time to notice the environment around you, to daydream, or simply just be, these unexpected moments to just slow down can be nourishing periods of self-care.
Skincare routines can feel tedious, but is a great way to build mindfulness into your daily routine. We live hectic lives and slowing down your skincare routine can feel like an immense dose of self-love. As you apply cream, serums and oils, truly notice the sensations along the way: the scents of the products you use, the texture of your skin, the feeling as your gently massage product into your skin. Mindfully choose what products that you use. Choose those that truly nourish your skin with natural ingredients and appreciate the benefits they provide to your skin.
Featured products that I recommend:
- Herbal Tea: NOW Foods has a wide variety of teas for every mood and occasion. Black tea is one of my favorite for a morning brew with caffeine for a slight pick me up (add a dash of manuka honey for sweetness). Hibiscus tea is a great summertime tea that is light, fruity and refreshing (great served as an iced tea). In the evening, there is nothing I enjoy more than Nighttime tea (with spearmint and chamomile) to help usher in my nighttime routine and encourage calm.
- Skin Care: Facial oils have been a new addition to my skin care routine that I can’t get enough of. This Balance Facial oil leaves my skin feeling so soft, nourished and hydrated with a blend of natural and soothing skin care oils. I love using it with a vibrating t-wand or gua sha stone for the ultimate mindful skincare pamper session.
- Protein Powders and Smoothie Add-Ins: Summer is all about smoothies for me. Adding a high quality protein powder (this is my fave as it tastes great and digests easily) is a great way to add more protein to your diet. I love adding a handful of nuts, seeds and fresh fruit to add texture and flavor too.
Save 20% on your entire order at NowFoods.com with code AMBER.