Noah and I went on holiday with my family to Dartmouth last month. One of our best days was at Slapton Sands where we enjoyed paddling in the sea.
The children were happy to get very wet all over despite the lack of sunshine. Mum and I opted to get just our feet wet.
Getting our feet wet in cold water is a sensation that really does bring us right back to the moment. You might gasp or jump as it makes contact. When that water splashes on your skin every ounce of your attention is right there with your body! No more day dreaming, no more worrying about the future, it really is an attention grabber!
Mindfulness is all about living in the moment. Although I love padding in the sea it wouldn’t be something I wanted to do to bring myself back to the moment on a regular basis!
When you learn to be present in the moment you will notice that your focus and concentration improve. You will enjoy life more too as you notice great moments as they arise.
Training your brain to pay attention is something you can do with a really simple exercise. Do it often and you will be able to chose whether to pay attention or to let your mind wander. It is quite an amazing feeling when you can make a conscious decision about this.
So try this…
1) Set your timer for 3 minutes.
2) Sit down with your back straight, hands on your lap, feet flat on the floor.
3) Notice your breath and watch your breathing. Don’t change it just notice how it is.
4) Start to count your breath, still not changing it. Count 1 for an in breath, 2 for an out breath.
5) Each time you get to 10 return to 1 and count again.
6) Each time your mind wanders simply bring your attention back to your counting. If you can’t remember what number you got to then simply start at 1 again.
7) Repeat until your timer goes off.
Although this exercise sound really simple the challenge comes from your own mind. If you have never done any exercises like this before then you are likely to find that you have a lot of mental chatter going on. Don’t let repeated distracting thoughts put you off, after a lifetime of allowing your mind to roam free it is bound to take some practise to get it listening to you!
Come on a Revitalise Day to lean more exercises for training your brain and see how much you relax! You will be so amazed at the difference it makes to your life.
Our retreat days are held in a lovely farmhouse in a beautiful Leicestershire village. They are a great opportunity to get to grips with mindfulness and meditation if it is new to you. If you have been meditating for some time then the day will fill you with new inspiration.