Welcome guest author and mental health counselor, Leslie Wolf Baker
It is important, that each day in each moment we have the opportunity to take a few minutes to be present. Taking a minute to focus on breathing in deeply and exhaling any negative emotions can alleviate any stress or tension.
Often, we think of being present as only a way to acknowledge our stress and to release it. This is a good practice and true. Release helps us to enjoy the moment we are in. But being present also means creating joyful moments before we feel out of balance by engaging in pleasurable activities if only for a few minutes throughout the day.
Some of my favorite ways of being present throughout the day include waking up and meditating in front of my window so I can see nature with the smell of incense or palo santo that I’ve just lit.
Sometimes I have an hour to do this and sometimes I have only a few minutes. Whatever time I have, I use. Something is better than nothing. I love to walk outside noticing the shapes of trees and often I see faces or animal figures in their bumps, knots and holes, and I say hello to these ancient wise beings.
Music and sound are healing for me. Research reveals that various frequencies known as Solfeggio Frequencies can have various healing properties. Striking my meditation bowl a few times or drumming bring me into the present moment and fill me with peace and joy, while also relieving stress.
Sometimes I dance and drum or dance to a favorite tune or dance with no music at all! One of my favorite moments is when I head outdoors and lay down on the ground looking up at the sky while the earth supports my body. I do this in summer, fall, winter and spring. All you need are the right clothes!
Being mindful throughout the day only takes a few moments no matter where you are.
Some ideas for mindful moments at home, in the car or in the office:
1) Breathe in for the count of three and exhale for the count of three for four or five breaths.
2) Make a mosaic out of the items on your desk using pencils, pens, paperclips, torn up papers from the recycle bin. Use nuts, bolts and screws. Make a mosaic with items in your kitchen. I created a labyrinth on my counter using some crystals, rocks and oranges to center myself one afternoon!
3) Light a candle and create an intention for the day.
4) Go outside and lay on the ground; this is known as Earthing and you can do it anywhere, except the middle of the road!
5) Draw a picture of concentric circles, clouds, whatever comes to your mind. Do it without judgment for its “artistic” properties.
6) Drink a cup of tea and feel the warmth of the cup in your hands and watch the steam rise.
7) Stand up and stretch your arms up high above your head while planting your feel firmly in place on the ground. Feel your presence. You are important to this world.
8) Create a positive statement or mantra and repeat it throughout the day. Speak it out loud if you are able to. Remember the healing frequencies of sound I mentioned?! Your voice is a powerful. Use it with love.
9) Look at images of nature if you can’t get outside.
10) Hug yourself for a minute and tell yourself how much you love YOU.
Book: This is Your Brain on Music by Daniel Levitin
Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever by Dr. Stephen Sinatra
To contact Leslie, go to SoulutionAlchemy.com