Photo: IconicBestiary (Getty Images)
When human beings live in the moment, they’re practicing mindful living. Mindfulness is defined as “the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something.” Additionally, mindfulness is a therapeutic technique that helps people pay attention on purpose, without judgment, so that they may appreciate life in the present. This helps calm the brain and ease anxiety.
Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh says, “Mindfulness shows us what is happening in our bodies, our emotions, our minds, and in the world. Through mindfulness, we avoid harming ourselves and others.” With this in mind, a mindful approach to thinking kind will help you evolve and live a better life. Here are three of the best tips on how to implement this in your life.
Implement A Stop-Phrase
They say the best defense is a good offense, which translates well into mindfulness. Thinking positively begins with catching yourself in a negative thinking pattern. If even your inner monologue is cruel, you’ll never be able to extend kindness towards others. First, you have to figure out how to silence your inner critic with a stop-phrase.
Henrik Edberg, author of the Positivity Blog, says, “You can reduce this inner, negative self-talk and change how you see yourself. You can do that by talking back. Simply create a stop-word or stop-phrase that you say or shout in your mind whenever your critic pipes up with a distorted and self-esteem-hurting thought.”
After you begin practicing compassion with yourself, it’s easier to act in kindness to others. However, it all starts with you and how you treat yourself.
Kindness doesn’t to be a grand gesture. Oftentimes, being kinder starts with one simple, yet positive act. Andy Puddicombe of the Headspace Blog says, “Kindness doesn’t have to entail a radical overhaul of your life or suddenly changing the way you behave around others. You needn’t dedicate your life to a cause in order to make a difference.”
Making a difference starts with the people you deal with every day. Small acts of kindness will start to add up. Things like complimenting a friend on a recent achievement, doing the dishes for your partner, or volunteering to walk a friend’s dog are all kindnesses that can have a big impact. Plus, doing things for others gets us in the practice of thinking in a kind way.
Make It A Habit
Thinking positively can’t happen if your core habits don’t change. The trick with mindfulness is practicing it every day. You might be tired and cranky, but you should put your focus on the positive and in helping others. This will help you help yourself.
Matt Valentine of Buddhaimonia explains, “The great thing about mindfulness is that you can do it while doing just about anything else. So it’s not so much choosing mindfulness over other things, it’s more of remembering to be mindful. At first, though, remember to keep it simple and choose simple objects of mindfulness.”
A couple of easy ways to get in the habit of being mindful is keeping a gratitude journal or using a meditation app like Headspace. Schedule a time each day to practice these mindful acts and you’ll be vibrating on a higher wavelength in no time.
Are there any ways you implement mindful thinking into your daily life? Let us know in the comments!