Mindfulness at Work and Home
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The world can be a noisy place. There are constant demands, nagging complaints and decisions to be made. Technology is now setting the pace and we are struggling to keep up. We need time-out and a moment to breathe. So how can we achieve this?
Written by an international barrister Gillian Higgins, who uses mindfulness in all aspects of her life, and referencing the latest scientific research, Mindfulness at Work and Home is a down-to-earth beginners’ guide to mindfulness. As the founder of Practical Meditation, Gillian has pioneered work in mindfulness amongst her professional peers, rapidly building a reputation as a leader in the field. The book is packed with simple hints, tips, quotes, answers to frequently asked questions and Gillian's tried and tested practices, with links to her own recorded meditations.
Gillian also tackles some of the bigger issues such as how mindfulness can help us to reduce stress, increase focus, tame our inner critical voice, overcome fear, improve sleep and reduce anxiety.
This accessible guide also contains personal insights and advice taken from Gillian’s own practice and suggestions on how to incorporate mindfulness into your daily life.
How can I be more mindful?
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PAUSE MORE, LIVE MORE
Few practical ways to slow down.
- Pay attention to what gets your attention.
- Be present.
- Put the cell phone away.
- Focus on the people in front of you.
- Drive the speed limit.
- Accept your limitations.
- Make time to have fun.
- Practice silence.
START YOUR DAY SLOWLY
If you’ve ever found yourself rushing through your morning routine in a frenzied state, only to feel like the rest of your day is a blur, you know how important it is to start the day off slowly.
When we treat our mornings like a to-do list, we set the tone for the rest of the day. We become impatient, stressed, and focused on checking things off our list instead of taking the time to enjoy the moment.
Everything changes when you give yourself enough morning time. You can enjoy every sip of coffee or tea, savour your breakfast, and even sneak in some meditation (more on that later).
You may even find that you can get more done throughout the day because you’re not rushing around constantly in a state of stress. So if you want to live slowly and savour every moment, start by giving yourself a slow morning routine.
SPEND TIME WITH NATURE
Spending quality time outdoors is essential for slowing down and reconnecting as a family.
There are countless ways to enjoy nature, from discovering new plants and animals with the kids to simply sprawling out on your deck at night to gaze up at the stars.
Perhaps one of the most satisfying things about spending time outside is watching something new grow or bloom under your care. Whether it’s nurturing sunflowers or planting a small vegetable garden together, these activities foster a sense of wonder and curiosity and help us feel connected to our environment and each other as we tend to nature’s cycles together.
When it comes to embracing silence, I’ve always struggled. I’ve viewed silence as dull and lifeless — something to be avoided. But I realise that there’s much beauty and wisdom in taking the time to slow down and cultivate stillness. We’re constantly exposed to noises, from the TV blaring in the background to the music pumping through our headphones.
By making your room or house completely silent, you can appreciate the small sounds often drowned out by background noise. This includes the sound of your own breath, the crunch of leaves as you walk, or the soft murmur of a loved one sleeping next to you. Additionally, enjoying a quiet meal can be a profoundly satisfying experience. Chewing noises and all, it can be incredibly calming to savour each bite without distractions. Likewise, listening to birds or embracing the white noise of people in the heart of a busy city can help you appreciate the beauty of everyday life.
By disconnecting from the constant noise, we can reconnect with ourselves and experience the world around us in a whole new way.
So next time you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a break from the noise and give yourself a chance to relax and experience slow living truly.