It is so easy to forget to stop, look around, listen and learn from the environment around you. Feel free to use these five easy mindful exercises on your next outdoor adventure.
Try mindful breathing for 3 minutes. It sounds like a short amount of time but with our habit of distraction this short burst of mindfulness is difficult for some. Take your time. Pick a place that you feel comfortable, I like to go into a forest or under a tree in a nearby park. Now stand still, breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Focus your attention of the act of breathing, letting all other thoughts subside. If you feel you need too you can start by counting the breaths you take but don’t let the counting take over. Do this a few times a week and you will be so much more attentive to the nature around you.
A simple but effective exercise for all nature lovers. This one is perfect for those of us who love to look around while we are outdoors. It is all about appreciating what’s around you. Choose a flower, a plant, a tree or any natural thing around you. Allow yourself to visually explore this object and examine it from root to tip. Think about its position, its movement and its place in the environment.
Instead of treating an activity as a task, enjoy each moment of the experience. This is a lovely mindful activity to try outdoors. So when you go for a walk concentrate on each step. Become absorbed in the motion, one foot in front of the other. Once you get into a rhythm and focus on each step you will feel like you are taking gigantic leaps and enjoy each step a little more.
Another one that is great when you are living life outdoors. This exercise is designed to help you listen carefully. You pick a song that you have never heard of, pick a quiet place, play the music and allow yourself to discover the new sounds, lyrics, instruments and rhythm. Leave any music preferences aside and listen intently to this new composition.
If you can do this exercise once a week you will feel more fulfulled. We might not realise it but the majority of things and people in our lives go unappreciated and even unnoticed. On a daily basis we pass by people, interact with people and pass over objects that make our world a better place. For this exercise you need to appreciate three things per day that would usually be undervalued. Maybe it’s the tree that grows the fruit you eat, maybe it’s the smell of flowers or maybe it’s an old pair of socks that never lets you down. Write down the objects/persons at the end of each day and acknowledge how your life is better with it/them in it.
If you enjoyed these easy mindful exercises or have some of your own to share with us we would love to hear from you.