The constant stream of incoming information from the world as we know it today keeps us in sensory overdrive. Between social media, work emails to our mobile phones after working hours and Netflix on constantly, we could actually live our lives without a moment of silence. It is all too often I hear that people are multitasking and think that they are good at it. But in fact, we cannot actually multitask.
There are two thoughts to this conclusion which resonate with me. Firstly, when you are doing too many things at once, you cannot focus all of your attention on the task. Therefore, the quality of work that you are providing is probably not as good as it could have been. Further, it will take you longer. Secondly, some people are better at the transition between tasks which makes them more efficient.
So, as we receive all this information, and constantly work through our tasks, do we ever just live in the present? I encourage you to consider this in your daily life. How often are you in the moment? Disconnected from your mobile device and being present? If your answer was not very often, do not fret, you are not alone. This is exactly what the concept of ‘mindfulness’ is meant for.
The concept mindfulness is about paying attention in the present about how we are feeling, psychologically and physically. When we do this, we are better able to understand our reactions to the world around us and, create new healthier reactions for the future in responding to life’s challenges.
The great part about this concept is anyone can be mindful at any given moment. We all have the ability to look within ourselves and explore why we feel the way that we do. But how exactly can you start? Well, again, you can start small at first.
If you have a commute to work, you can start by practicing mindfulness there. Instead of reading, listening to music or a podcast, take a few moments to see how you are feeling. Acknowledge those thoughts and feelings also draw attention to what sensations are you feeling. This can be your starting point.
There are many benefits to practising mindfulness. Because of its stress lowering effects, it helps build a stronger immune system and lowers blood pressure. It also helps with anxiety and depression and increases focus.
So, why don’t you start today? If you already practise mindfulness, well done! Perhaps you can do so more frequently in your day or perhaps you can try meditation. Take time for you!