At this time of year, your mind is probably juggling several thoughts at once: gift buying, cooking, visiting friends and family, doing last minute-preps…the list continues.
As fulfilling and heart-warming as all these activities can be, when was the last time you gave yourself the gift of silence? When was the last time you did absolutely nothing for just 10 minutes?
It sounds almost silly, but sometimes we literally have to carve out “nothingness” into our schedule.
Mindfulness has been used throughout centuries as a way to bring the mind back to the present moment. Mindfulness is often used to increase productivity and happiness levels by allowing the mind to consider just one task at a time and not be pulled by past or present anxieties.
Studies have shown that nearly 47% of our waking hours are not focused on what we’re doing in the moment. “Our mental lives are pervaded, to a remarkable degree, by the nonpresent,” says psychologist Matthew Killingsworth of Harvard University.
Think about how we troubleshoot our electronics when they aren’t working properly. We often do a “reboot.”
Oxford English Dictionary defines reboot as a process to “put in a state of readiness for operation.” Our electronics need it every so often, so why not our own minds?
Mindfulness is the human reboot system and it is sweeping across the nation from a high level executives’ office to the kitchen of a single mom of 4.
…And all it takes is 10 minutes.
This holiday season, schedule your “10 Minutes of Mindfulness” into your day. Pop the turkey in the oven, set the timer, and then go do nothing.
You’ll be surprised at how you feel afterwards, and how much more productive and present you will be.
For a 10 minute guided mindfulness exercise, try listening to Lee Holden’s “Inner Smile Meditation.”