When we are so preoccupied with completing the activities of our day, attending to our errands and emails, and looking at the next video or link that we come across, when do we expect to find the time to focus on our own happiness?
When will we feel it if not right in this moment?
It’s possible that we believe it will come when we better our lives, when we achieve our goals, when we have success with our business, or when we graduate from college. It’s possible that it’ll hit us on our next trip, or when we finally get some downtime to ourselves.
Maybe if we started living in the moment and started appreciating little things rather then obsessing over inconveniences, we could learn to be happy in every consequence. Leo Babauta is known for teaching people on how to practice Zen Habits.
Here are three habits for beginners that will get you started.
Start with a simple routine
Create the routine of meditating for only two minutes on a daily basis. When you first wake up, find a comfortable seat and spend the next two minutes trying to concentrate on your breathing. If your mind wanders, you should just be aware of it and classify it as “thinking.” And then softly bring your attention back to the breath, without any force. Put on a timer, and when it goes off, you’re finished with what you were doing! You are not required to expand it, but you are free to do so if you feel like increasing the length of it by one minute once a week or so.
One advantage of engaging in this kind of routine is that it enables you to acquire abilities that are transferable to other aspects of your day.
Devise an intention before starting anything
If you’re about to do something for work, check your email, read a book, or make dinner, just before you start, you can take a moment to think about what you want to get out of the activity. What do you want to accomplish with this?
I might make dinner for my family or for myself out of love. I might write a blog post (like this one) because I care about the people who read it. I might work out because I love myself (and to set a good example for my kids). I check my email because it’s the right thing to do and because I care about the people who are trying to get in touch with me.
By setting an intention, you are reminded to keep that intention in mind as you do anything else.
Reflect on your day
Take a minute to journal or ponder each day, end or beginning. How’s being present going? What’s been difficult? Have you established intentions and used mindfulness bells? What resistance have you encountered? What are you telling yourself? Daily reflection is one of the best ways to keep practicing and improve mindfulness.
Also check ‘5 Habits for Selfcare’