Mindful self-care is a personal practice that involves deep self-reflection and self-awareness. It can be something as simple as sitting down in silence for a few minutes each day, or it can be much more involved. Mindful self-care offers an opportunity to take care of your mental health by balancing it with care for your physical body.
What is mindful self-care?
Mindful self-care is a way of caring for yourself by paying attention to your thoughts, feelings, and sensations. It's also being with yourself in a nonjudgmental way and allowing yourself to feel whatever comes up without trying to change it.
Mindfulness practice can help you manage stress because it helps you become aware of what's happening inside of you right now--rather than getting caught up in thoughts like "I'm so stressed out!" or "I have so much work on my plate right now." This awareness gives us space between ourselves and our experiences, which allows us to respond instead of react. Mindfulness practices allow us not only to see things more clearly but also respond differently than we might have done otherwise
Mindful self-care is a deeply personal process, so each person will approach it in a different way.
Mindful self-care is a deeply personal process, so each person will approach it in a different way. Some people may have a more formal practice and others will have an informal one. It's important to do what works for you!
You don't have to be practicing mindfulness meditation all day long to experience the benefits of mindfulness.
You don't have to be practicing mindfulness meditation all day long to experience the benefits of mindfulness. In fact, you can practice it in many ways:
Mindfully eat your food and notice how it tastes and feels in your mouth. Notice when you enjoy a particular flavor or texture, or when something doesn't taste as good as usual. Try not to think about anything else while eating but just focus on savoring each bite.
Take a walk through nature without headphones or any other distractions (except maybe some good music). Pay attention only to what's around you--the sounds of birds chirping and leaves rustling in the wind; the smell of fresh air; maybe even some sunlight warming up your face! This is also an excellent opportunity for self-care because walking outside lets us breathe deeply from our diaphragms--which helps us relax more easily--and gives us access to vitamin D from sunlight exposure during winter months when we might not get enough sun indoors under heavy clothes/blankets etcetera...
Mindfulness helps you notice and accept your feelings, including painful ones, rather than trying to push them away.
It helps you focus on the present moment instead of worrying about the past or future. Mindfulness is a way of being, not a destination. As such, it's more like learning how to dance than studying ballet: The practice itself gives us access to new experiences that can be enjoyable in themselves (like learning something new) while also providing benefits over time through ongoing development--in this case as our capacity for mindfulness grows stronger over time through continued practice.
When you practice mindfulness, you give yourself permission to notice what's going on within you and around you without judgment, which allows space and room for change.
When we are mindful of our thoughts, feelings and emotions they become less intense. We can choose how we want to respond or react to them instead of being swept away by them. When this happens over time it helps us develop a capacity for compassion towards ourselves and others that is based on kindness rather than criticism or judgmental thinking.
During mindfulness meditation, you'll likely notice that your mind wanders off (this is normal) and then gently guide it back
When this happens, gently guide it back to observing your breath or body sensations. As you become more familiar with this exercise in letting go of judgment and allowing things to be as they are, you'll find yourself becoming more aware of thoughts, feelings and sensations--and experiencing life more fully.
Practicing mindfulness can help quiet negative self-talk and reduce self-criticism and shame.
Mindfulness can help you become more aware of the negative self-talk that's happening in your mind. When you're practicing mindfulness, you're paying attention to what's going on around you, instead of being lost in thought. You might notice that your thoughts are negative or critical and then work on changing those thoughts into something more positive.
If this sounds like something that would be helpful for you, try starting with one small action: noticing when your mind wanders away from an activity (like walking) and bringing it back to the activity at hand. This is called "mindful awareness." The more often we do this over time--and especially if we practice regularly--the easier it will get!
Mindful self-care can help you balance your mental health with care for your physical body.
Mindful self-care is a process of learning to be present in the moment. It means paying attention to your body and emotions, without judgment or criticism. Mindfulness can help reduce stress and anxiety, as well as negative self-talk. It also helps you connect with your body on an emotional level--which can help you become more aware of what feels good or bad for you physically, which in turn can lead to better health decisions overall (for example: going for walks instead of binge-watching Netflix).
We all have a lot on our plates, but it's important to make room in your life for self-care. By practicing mindfulness, you can nurture your mental and physical health and reduce stress. It's also important to remember that no matter how busy or stressed out you are, there are always small ways to take care of yourself.