Having trouble fitting mindfulness into your schedule? Try these tips:
- Set a reminder:
Visit the Account Settings tab of the app, set your WEEKLY SCHEDULE to receive push notifications on your device on the days and times that work for you. If you do not use the app, set a reoccurring meeting in your Google or Outlook calendar, Salesforce task, or a SlackBot reminder.
- Adjust your routine
It’s tricky, but look at it this way:
- If you practice for 15 minutes, that’s less than 1% of your day.
- If you added up the amount of time you spend checking your phone in a day, that would be about an hour.
- A 1% change in your day can lead to major positive shifts in the other 99%.
- Keep your practice at the same time and the same place whenever possible
Doing this will help you ingrain your mindfulness practice into your daily routine.
- Tips for creating habits & routines
- Before you get out of bed in the morning, pause for three whole breaths. With just a few seconds, set the tone for the day ahead.
- When you brush your teeth, focus your attention on the physical sensations, the smells, the taste etc.
- Make your morning coffee a ritual. Sit down with it. Take in the smell, the taste, and the room.
- Stick a blank post-it note on your front door to “trigger” yourself to be mindful as you walk out.
- Make the beginning and end of a business trip a mindful moment. When you first get on the plane or in the car, be present for 3 breaths. Then repeat again on the way home.
- If you work at a desk, use your change in posture to trigger the memory to be present. Each time you sit down or stand up is an opportunity.
- Pause before eating, just long enough for one whole breath. As you eat, use the taste and smell as the focal point for your attention.
- Put a small sticker on the back of your phone to remind yourself to be present before the mind gets lost in thoughts and distractions.
- Get a “remember to be mindful tattoo”. We're kidding. Unless you want one.
- Take a moment before going to bed to appreciate something good that has happened in the day. Even something small—the clouds parting, the taste of your first cup of coffee, the sweet parking spot you found in front of work—give that good fortune a moment to grow before letting it go.
Start small. Pick one activity a day and make it a habit. Then pick one at home and one at work. Each time a new habit gets strong, add another a week later. Before you know it, you’ll have routines throughout the day that help you maintain calm and clarity.
- Notice the value of a mindfulness training practice to fuel your motivation
For example, we don't forget to eat, take a shower, or watch our favorite show. The first one is important to us staying healthy, the second one is important to those around us and the third one is fun—all of these things have immediate value to us. That’s why we remember to do these things and feel convinced to continue.
Mindfulness training has value, too. It helps us find calm, build attention, and strengthen our relationships with others. These things are more or less invisible. And unlike eating, showering, or watching TV, we don’t get the value right away. Mindfulness practice is like a savings account for your mind. It doesn’t feel like much when you start it. But after consistently banking a little here and a little there for a while, you’ve got something substantial.
You strengthen your motivation by noticing value on the short- and long-term scale. In the short-term, think of how refreshed your mind feels after sitting for 15 minutes. In the long-term, watch your relationships day to day. See how your clarity and calm shift things and remind yourself that this will keep shifting towards the positive. You’re moving the needle, slowly but surely.
If we don’t check in with ourselves from time to time to notice how meditation training benefits us, then it is easy to brush it off.