X

5 Steps To A Mindful Living

We live in an incredibly busy world. Moving from one activity to another without pausing to fully experience the present. We’ve forgotten how it feels to do nothing and have come to believe that this is how life is meant to be. What we don’t realise is that living like this can only lead to stress and a sense of unfulfillment.

Studies have shown that 77% of people regularly experience physical symptoms caused by stress and 48% say stress has a negative impact on their personal and professional life. And yet we seem helpless despite these disturbing statistics.

So what stops us from adopting a healthy lifestyle? Is it that we don’t know what to do? Everyone I talk to understands that they need to change but not many seem to be able to take the first step. Could it be a mental block? Do we think these changes are difficult?

Actually they’re not. I recently put together a simple 5-step simple process that you can adapt and include in your daily routine to bring about a certain sanity in the crazy fast-paced life of yours. I call it the P-A-L-A-C Model. Each of the alphabets in the P-A-L-A-C model represents a behaviour as described below:

Pause

It can mean pausing at any time during your busy day and noticing where you are. Each time you feel that the pace of life is getting to much for you, you can just press the ‘Pause Button’. For a few seconds, you can step out of the ‘auto-pilot’ mode and become aware of your body, mind and the environment. And then, without making a big deal about it, carry on with your day.

Acceptance

This is probably one of the most difficult things to practice. Learning to accept yourself without judgment and going easy on yourself when things go wrong is an important link to being able to accept others as well. We often tend to come down hard on ourselves when things don’t go as planned or as we desired. Especially at times like these, if you’re able to develop a forgiving attitude and accept that not everything will turn out the way we want and the universe may have a different plan, and keep practicing this attitude again and again, you will find that you’re able to exercise the same level of acceptance of others too.

Letting Go

This can be challenging for control freaks. We can, however, learn let go of our need to control everything if we believe that everything happens for a reason. This is not to say that we don’t make any effort to get what we want. But knowing at what point do you stop fighting and start accepting is the key here. When you start practicing this with smaller things in life, you will find that you’re a little more able to let go of these attachments in the other areas of your life as well.

Animal Taming

The human mind is wild and erratic. If you sit in silence and observe how your mind works, you will find that it jumps from one thought to the other and is totally not in your control, just like a monkey:-). It has a life of its own. However, with skill and discipline, it can be trained to be more obedient. It is kind of like a little puppy who you’re training to obey your commands. With a little patience and kindness, this puppy can be trained to heel, run, come to you or do anything you want it to. Your mind is just like that.

Creating Space

We are human beings, but we have forgotten how to be. We have become human doings, trapped in a mode of always doing, acting, achieving and keeping busy. When we stop even for a moment, it can feel frightening and unnatural. Activity and busyness have become our default mode. Learning to pause and creating space between activities allows you to take stock of where you are and pulls you out of the auto-pilot mode that I mentioned above.

I recommend that you try to use at least one or two of these tools, if not all. Needless to mention that these habits take time to develop and become a part of your personality gradually with more and more practice.

-x-

%d bloggers like this: