Mindful living: Tips for a more present life

In the rollercoaster that is modern life’s fast pace, it’s quite easy to lose ourselves in the present moment. Days turn into weeks as we pursue the next deadline or notification, often forgetting the beauty of now. To us, being present simply means engaging fully with what’s happening in this very second, without the distractions of past regrets or future worries. It’s about living where life is happening: right here.

So, we want to share with you how we can be more in tune with our present state or environment and appreciate it more.

One of the most accessible ways back to the present is through our breath. Breathing exercises are a powerful tool for mindfulness. A few deep, intentional breaths can serve as that anchor, pulling us back from our thoughts into the now. Try inhaling slowly for a count of four, holding your breath for seven counts, and exhaling for eight. This technique not only helps in staying grounded but can also reduce stress. That way we’re more focused and calm.

Our second point is no surprise to anyone but the reminder should be helpful—reducing screen time. Reducing screen time can dramatically open the door to more mindful living. We think of using specific times to check emails or social media, intentionally deciding to put our devices away during meals or moments with loved ones. As much as we love to take pictures and make videos, we don’t want to replace enjoying the moment with the remembrance of what could have been. Okay, you can take a group photo and put the phone away. 

Another way that’s helpful is by practicing gratitude. Being grateful for current life circumstances is a powerful way to shift our perspective toward the positive. We think to start or end our day by noting three things we’re grateful for. We can transform our view of our day-to-day life and recognise the abundance of blessings that we might have been overlooking. 

Holding onto past hurts can also keep us in moments that have long since passed. Forgiving is not about forgetting or condoning what happened, but rather choosing to release the weight of resentment. When we forgive, we make room in our hearts and minds to live more fully in the present. It’s a gift we give ourselves – a step toward healing and away from the chains of past grievances.

The next practical step is scheduling time to actually worry. Most times, we’re not present because we’re worried about something else. And one thing worry will do, is creep up on you. 

Although, by setting aside a specific time to address our worries, we give ourselves permission to set them aside during other parts of the day, allowing us to focus on the moment at hand.

Lastly, we want to talk about the 5-4-3-2-1 grounding exercise. It’s a simple, yet effective, method to return to the now. So, we start by naming five things you can see, then four things you can touch, followed by three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and finally, one thing you can taste. This exercise helps in pulling our awareness back to our current environment, which is where we really should be.

While life can get crazy, remember to ground yourself in the present. Through simple practices like mindful breathing, reducing screen time, and embracing the world around us with gratitude and forgiveness, we start to live a more fulfilling life.


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