Mindfulness

6 Bloggers Share their #1 Mindful and Intentional Living Tip

Living a mindful and intentional life. Sounds awesome, right? But if you’re new on this journey, or maybe have fallen off after a while of being on it, the path can be overwhelming and/or you may feel like you don’t know where to start. It can also be challenging because society tends to value the opposite – being busy. Valuing a work-filled life. Of course, there isn’t anything wrong with these things if they are truly your values. But I’m going to guess if you’re here, they aren’t.

So where to begin? To answer this question, I called out to some amazing bloggers who write about living a mindful and intentional life, and asked them to share a tip they would tell someone just starting out on this journey. Check out their responses below.



Listen 

Check in with your body. Right now. Are you tense? Are you tired? Are you feeling ok? How often do you stop and just check in with your body? I used to NEVER do this. I would just rush about my day, only thinking about what I had to do next or where I needed to be next. Imagine my surprise when I started regularly checking in with myself and found that I was constantly holding tension, my jaw was often clenched, and my breath shallow? Maybe you have started realizing you're like me. Or, maybe you constantly are getting sick, have a headache, or are always tired (obviously I'm not a doctor here, so if you have concerns about your health, you should talk with your doctor). In my experience, these are all clues that your body is telling you to slow down, and that it is in need of some TLC.

Just like your body gives you clues and insight into how it is feeling and what it needs, you have another part of you that also gives you clues, insight, and direction. Your intuition. Your intuition can give you guidance in all aspects of your life, if you choose to listen to it. Have you ever had 'a feeling' that something wasn't right or in contrast, that something was absolutely the right choice? That was your intuition. Some people describe it as a 'gut feeling'. If you are interested in learning more about listening to your intuition, I would highly recommend the podcast 'The Lively Show by Jess Lively' (here is her website). I have learned a lot about listening to my intuition by listening to Jess.

Another method that can be great for stopping and listening to your body and/or intuition is through meditation. I would recommend checking out my 2-minute guided meditations (with nature photography). These are quick and guide you through the meditation, so they are perfect for those just starting out, or those who want to use it as an intro to a longer practice.

If meditation isn't for you, or you want to try something else, I wrote about 5 ways to meditate, without actually meditating. These activities can provide some of the same benefits as meditation. You can find that post here.

Listening to your body and mind is a great way to start living a more intentional and mindful life. It makes you aware of what is going on. Whether listening to your body's physical cues or your internal guidance with your intuition, you can be sure to be on the right path to living a life you want to live.

Laura - The Mindful Mom Blographer

Feel Silly

The first time I ever meditated (which is only one form of mindfulness), I felt so silly. I remember sitting there, with my yoga classmates, feeling as though they were all staring at me. I thought I must have looked pretty silly. So I kept opening my eyes to check if they were staring at me. My lack of confidence got the best of me.

Obviously they were not staring at me. Everyone in that room had their eyes closed, were sitting or lying in their relaxing pose, and were totally immersed in their own world. Nobody gave a darn about what I was doing.

Then I felt silly because I was worried I looked silly.

Starting something new will always make you feel silly. So just be silly. Have fun with your mindfulness practice until you feel comfortable enough to sit in that meditation room with other people. Channel that feeling of silliness, use it to fuel your practice.

Don’t be afraid to feel silly. In your mindfulness practice and in your life. You never know what wonderful things you will experience!

Megan Johnson - Learning Lotuses

Slow down 

As a yoga teacher and practicing yogi, I am always looking for ways to practice awareness, practice being in the now. I find that journaling and paying attention to my breath and my thoughts helps me become more mindful. I think a way to introduce mindfulness to your life is by slowing down. Slowing down applies to anything from work, to food, to relationships. When you slow down you become more aware of what you are doing. I find that slowing down allows me to be more precise, more detailed, more focused. I am able to complete my work faster and with better results. It gives me the opportunity to really focus on what's in front of me. It teaches me how important the things and people that I have in my life, really are.

When I slowed down, I became more aware, more aware of myself, more aware of the impact my behavior had on others. I feel like slowing down deserves its own blog post, it's so important, but we often dismiss it. When you slow down you can really allow what you practice become part of you and master what you are doing. When you fully immerse yourself in something, magic happens.

As you begin in your mindfulness journey, slowing down can be challenging. Focus on one task first. Allow yourself the time to really laser focus on what you are doing. Take a few breaths and give yourself a mental check, acknowledge your slowing down and how it gives you space to become more aware.

Dagmara - Dagmara Postelle

Take it as a journey

Since starting my own practice of Mindfulness, there have been times when I have lost my cool or days when I couldn't tell you what I did in the last hour as my mind was off in a million places. When that would happen over and over again I would think "That wasn't very mindful of me" "maybe I'm just not cut out to do this."
I had to stop my mind from continuing in that negative cycle, take some deep breaths and remind myself that MINDFULNESS IS A JOURNEY, not a destination.
So that would be my number one tip, to anyone else who is starting to learn and practice mindfulness, it is a journey, not a destination. There will always be room for improvement and there will always be days or moments where you weren't as mindful as you could have been. But that is okay, you are on a journey and as long as you are open to learn and grow and pick yourself up, again and again, you are doing it! You are practicing mindfulness.
Elva Fisher - Pursuing Delights

Write it out

A friend encouraged me to write out my “ideal normal day” when I first started seeking a more intentional life. What an ideal normal day would feel like, what I would do with my time, where I would live, what would my family be doing? It took me about an hour to write, but I have referred back to that little document again and again. It has been exhilarating to see parts of that vision become a reality the past few years!  When you know where you want to go you can be much more intentional in your decisions.

Maegan O'Loughlin - This Blue Dress

Don't get frustrated

Don’t get frustrated if you try things and they do not work right away. Especially meditation. I had a life coach once tell me that meditation is like doing a pull up for the brain. It’s hard, and at first, you may not be successful. But the more that you practice, the better you will get at it. One day, you’ll be able to do the pull up. Then 2, then 3….

Mindfulness practices are unfortunately a lot of work in the beginning. Creating the habit is not easy, but the results that they have are so worth the effort. Go on. Do that pull up.

Caitlin Downs - Snuggleosophy

A huge thank you to Megan, Dagmara, Elva,  Maegan, and Caitlin for sharing their tips with us. I would highly recommend checking out their blogs - they are full of great information and resources to help you incorporate mindfulness and intentional living into your everyday life.

Megan Johnson – Learning Lotuses

Dagmara – Dagmara Postelle

Elva Fisher – Pursuing Delights

Maegan O'Loughlin - This Blue Dress

Caitlin Downs - Snuggleosophy

What tip would you add? I'd love to hear about it in the comments!

Join a community of like-minded people also on their journey to reducing mental clutter through mindful and intentional living, minimalism, and zero waste living! Find the group here.

Looking to add a little more mindfulness to your life? Check out my FREE 7-Day Mindfulness E-Course and learn how! This course is packed with mindfulness tips, tricks, and resources for you to use and learn!

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Ishah
Guest

May have to try this! Between work, home and life in general, I haven’t had much time to just sit and enjoy the silence.

EscapeWriters
Guest

Trying hard to do some yoga or meditation exercises to feel relaxed all the day. This is such a great list how we can improve peace of mind by practicing some activities.

Dagmara
Guest

Thank you so much for including me and sharing these awesome tips. I shared to Pinterest in Twitter.

Liz Chapman
Guest

I find it hard to sit still and just be. It’s something I need to work on. If I’m sitting still I’m thinking of all the stuff I could be doing.

Marya
Guest

I’ve slowly been learning to incorporate mindfulness and I’m getting a better handle over mindless eating.

Elke
Guest

This was excellently uplifting. You have a new subscriber. I have been incorporating mindfulness in my day to day whenever i could. I even make sure to drink my water out of a pretty mug instead of a water bottle since it seems more personal and enjoyable and informal. It may seem trivial, but I found that if I honor my time with coffee with a pretty mug then I should do the same with water. It make me happier. 😁😁😁

Paula @ I'm Busy Being Awesome
Guest

I love these tips! I really need to slow down and see the process as a journey, both of which are a challenge for me. Thanks so much for gathering all of this great information 🙂

Alyssa | Lattes & Faith
Guest

Love this post so much! This is such helpful information. I need to work on slowing down more. Sometimes I feel like I’m just rushing through each day, and life in general, and that’s not how I want to live. Thanks for sharing this!

amy
Guest

Love these tips!

Doug
Guest

Getting started is really hard when you have spent your entire life at a very fast pace. I have a hard time stringing even a couple of days together to practice. I definitely have time to spare, but it is difficult practicing mindfulness and creating a new behavior, but I am trying. Thanks for your support.

Renee
Guest

These are so great. I was just thinking today about how I think I need to write out my intentions for my days because they tend to feel way too jumbled! I feel like I’m breathing easier just reading this.

Bailey
Guest
Bailey

Be silly! I love that. Too often we take life too seriously to laugh but it is so good for us.

Becky
Guest

Great post, really enjoyed to points you made. Personally I try to take time out of my day to really focus on my breathing. Even for 5 minutes, just to keep focused on the present moment and try and still my mind.

Miranda
Guest

Love all these great ideas and reminders. I can relate to Laura’s story about the need to stop and listen to our bodies. I have had to learn to let negative thoughts and feeling go much faster otherwise I feel the affects physically.

Jenny
Guest

These are some great tips, with wonderful explanation included on each segment. We all need reminders when things get busy and stressful on how to take a step back.

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