I teach mindfulness techniques to yogis who come to my Yoga Teacher Trainings.
Here are some of my go-to Mindfulness Techniques:
1. Counting the breath
While waiting in the checkout line at the grocery store I’ll often count my breath down from 20. Inhale, 20. Exhale, 20. Inhale, 19. Exhale, 19. Etc. This immediately calms me down. And, I feel productive because it counts as a meditation.
Often we injure ourselves and permanently lose the ability to breath correctly. It’s true! When we breath we are supposed to inhale, immediately loosen the belly muscles so our stomach puffs up like a balloon. Then, we continue inhaling into our chests. Our ribs expand outwards in all directions, and move away from each other slightly. Finally, we breath until our clavicles (collar bone) lifts up ever so slightly. When we exhale, we do the same motions in reverse. The collarbone drops, the ribs retract inwards, and the belly button moves in towards the spine. You slightly contract the abdominal muscles (20% effort, don’t strain) at the very end of the exhale.
This mindfulness on the breath re-teaches you how to breath most efficiently. And the breath affects so many things: your blood pressure, posture, and mood.
This last one is less possible on the go, but not impossible. Just use the notes app in your phone to journal. First, when you have the urge to give in to a bad habit (smoking, nail-biting, over-eating, etc.) journal about your feelings first. The goal is not to give up your habit right away, but to document your thoughts and emotions when you have a craving. Then, what you’ll find is that over time you will give into your urges less. I think the key to this tactic is that you’re not expected to give up cold-turkey. Or at all. The only requirement for this exercise is to journal. What you do afterwards is up to you.
How can you make Mindfulness Techniques part of your daily life?
Do you need more help with mindfulness? Come to a Yoga Teacher Training. You will learn about physical yoga as well as more mindfulness techniques and practices you can incorporate into your daily routine. Learn more about Yoga Teacher Trainings here.