Mindful Mondays: What Is Mindfulness?

We’ve all had those moments where we’re running through the motions and playing out the actions, but lack the feeling of presence. We’re there, but we’re not really there.

Lately, I could be sitting in a conversation with a friend or family member, and find myself completely spaced out. It’s as though I’d be grasping to reach their words but was far too deep in my own mind to engage.

What Is Being Mindful?

Mindfulness is about slowing down our lives and being truly present in the moments unfolding in front of us. It’s about clearing our busy minds and making room for deeper thinking. Mindfulness is about knowing where we are, what we are doing, and staying calm in busy moments. When being mindful, we cultivate the best qualities of ourselves and simply feel better. Mindfulness allows us to expel judgement and embrace creativity, curiosity and acceptance.

What Are The Benefits?

For me, I started practicing mindfulness when my anxiety began to hinder the quality of my life. I would look at obstacles in my life as my own shortcomings, and believed I wasn’t good enough, living a life destined for failure. Sounds pretty morbid, right? If you suffer from anxiety, or find your mind is focusing on a million things at once, mindfulness can truly change the way you think.

Studies have shown that practicing mindfulness has led to better control of stress, improved sleep, and alleviating anxiety, pain, and depression. It also improves our ability to fully immerse ourselves in experiences and improves creativity (Time Magazine, 5). When we’re anxious, our minds are in a “fight or flight” mode. Practicing mindfulness can actually help reduce that restless brain activity and introduce a calmness in the mind. By changing your thoughts, you can change the way you perceive situations, and even the way you see yourself.

How Can You Practice Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is something we all have the ability to do. We can all cultivate these qualities which inherently help us recognize our potential and worth. If you’ve never practiced any kind of meditation or are new to meditating, this is a great place to start.

Breathing mediations are also a wonderful way to start your day with a fresh and clear mind.

If anxiety is something you struggle with, this yoga mediation is a great way to reduce stress and mediate anxious thinking.

Have you practiced mindfulness before? What are your thoughts?

“The best way to capture moments is to pay attention. This is how we cultivate mindfulness. Mindfulness means being awake. It means knowing what you are doing.” ~Jon Kabat-Zinn

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  • Girl, I LOVE THIS. First of all funny story, I’ve got anxiety and one time (at a kinda low and freaked-out point) in an airport, I impulse purchased that exact Mindfulness magazine. And ever since then, for the past few months, I’ve been reading a lot more and putting a lot more effort into mindfulness. You’re totally right, it’s such a good thing to practice. I find myself doing everything in life, even the small things, with intention and care. And it makes me feel in control, and at ease. Also your blog is everything I love, good job. 🙂

    Julia || juliainbluhm.

    • Diana Maria

      Thank you Julia! I felt the same way when buying this magazine haha, it’s really been such a help. I wish you all the best in your mindful practice. I’m glad you stopped by!

  • I will definitely check out the Yoga Meditation. My favorite yoga class is a Relax & Restore class because it is excellent and reducing stress.

    Brittany | thechicette.com

    • Diana Maria

      That’s so great to hear Brittany, good luck with your yoga practice!

  • The way you described what mindfulness is made me really understand it a lot better. Thanks! I am so guilty of having a conversation with someone and not really listening to what they have said and a few times I have had to tell them sorry, I actually didn’t process what you just said. Because I’ve been too busy thinking of what I am going to say next or thinking about my own thing instead of being present in what was happening. I’ve tried meditation before but Im still unsure about whether it really helped me or not. But we can all benefit from being more mindful and more present in what we are doing. Great post 🙂

    • Diana Maria

      Thank you Melanie! It can be hard to really concentrate on the present moment, and meditation used to seem so confusing to me. With time it can really grow on you and change the way you think- although it can be hard to find time to put it into a routine, Have a great week Melanie xx

  • Beautiful photos~

    Vivian | LIVE . IN . LOVE

    ~

    • Diana Maria

      Thank you xx

  • I really like this entry. Lately, I’ve been trying my hardest to be mindful of everyone and everything around me. Life’s too short to not be mindful enough.

    cabin twenty-four

    • Diana Maria

      I couldn’t have said it better myself! Good luck with practicing being mindful Eena, I’m sure you’ll enjoy the benefits!

  • I’m really “sensitive” to this topic. I’m a very ambitious young woman, and stress and anxiety sometimes really get to me. Lately I’ve been trying to connect a lot more with myself, rediscovering what make me happy and calm. I’ve started going on walks again, getting surprised by the beauty of the world that surrounds me and I’ve begun to read for one hour every night, as I used to do when I was a younger, less busy me.
    Thank you for this post, I really enjoyed it.
    Have an amazing day,
    Agnese’s Coiffeuse

    • Diana Maria

      I feel like I could relate so much to your comment Agnese, I can be quite sensitive about these things too. Reading before bed is such a great idea, I used to do the same as a child! It’s wonderful going back to old routines and appreciating the slow moments. Have a lovely week and thank you for reading!

      • I totally agree with you! Have an amazing week 🙂

  • Beautiful read and your whole blog is really nice, I really like your header, I wanted to change mine to something like this with flowers and leaves around the name, but really can not be bothered to run that photoshop lol. I have been feeling so unmotivated recently, bearing in mind I’m 2 weeks away from my due date!! 😀 xXx

    • Diana Maria

      Aw thank you Dominica, I’ve been looking to change my header as I did that one up so quickly in Photoshop but I know the feeling haha. That’s so exciting! I’m sure you have so much on your mind, I wish you all the best with your pregnancy love xx

    • Diana Maria

      Thank you xx

  • This post is so important! I love how you broke it down into easy steps that anyone can take towards being more mindful.

  • I totally feel you about zoning out when being with people and forgetting why you’re actually there because you’re focusing on so many other things. Sometimes I find myself just wishing away the days when really I should be being mindful about every moment. I’ve tried meditation and I just need to stick to it more in a routine. Mindfulness is difficult when you can’t focus your mind though. Thank you for writing such an honest post that I can relate to!
    Kate || http://www.katerattley.com

    • Diana Maria

      It really can be, I find baby steps as well as not having huge expectations for small exercises to help! It may seem small in the beginning, but working on mediation and being mindfulness can grow so quickly. Thank you for reading Kate!

  • I’ve really been focusing on mindfulness recently too, just being in the moment and actually feeling grateful for the small things ♥

    Amy // Snippets of Amy

    • Diana Maria

      That’s wonderful Amy, I hope you find the benefits worth it!

  • I really want to start getting into yoga once my exams are over.
    Aleeha xXx
    http://www.halesaaw.co.uk/

    • Diana Maria

      Good luck Hale, I think you’ll enjoy it!

  • Sometimes the way I practice mindfulness in my life is to avoid my mobile phone and just be present on where I am and what I am doing. I felt like using my phone is a disturbance for me to be fully present and engage more with people. Thus, one of my new year’s resolution is to lessen my usage of the social media especially I’ve been addicted to it and neglect the people around me and during that process of forming it into a habit, I can say that the results are so good.

    Augustin Ra / Indie Spirit

    • Diana Maria

      I agree Augustin, I love putting my phone away when with friends and just engaging myself in the moment! That’s amazing, I wish you all the luck with lessening your social media usage, I’ve been working on that as well! xx

  • rae

    I am so glad that mindfulness is a larger discussion these days as I think it is needed more than ever in a digital age where we are under so much more constant stress. I really love what Jon Kabat Zinn has to say about capturing moments as well. We often feel the pressure to capture everything for social media, our blogs, youtube, etc. but sometimes it’s nice to put that all aside and be 100% present in a moment, which for me has a lot to do with mindfulness – or just deciding to spend a good 30 seconds (which is actually a long time!) or minute just being in a moment and then taking it in for social media.

    Rae | LFB Blogazine

    • Diana Maria

      I think so too! It’s a great topic to shed light on and I find it’s helped so much with anxiety, as well as looking at real life unfold in front of you without a lens or social media every once in a while. Thank you so much for your feedback and for reading Rae!

  • I really enjoy using Mindfulness apps they’re so helpful xx

    • Diana Maria

      Me too, especially HeadSpace!

  • merel

    Stunning photo’s!! <3 That view is amazing.

    X Merel
    http://www.andathousandwords.com

    • Diana Maria

      Thank you Merel xx

  • Mindfulness is a great concept and I noticed that it helped with my anxiety as well. Thanks for a really great post! 🙂

    -Leta | The Nerdy Me

    • Diana Maria

      It’s so helpful with anxiety, I’m glad you also practice mindfulness Leta that’s wonderful. Thank you for reading!

  • AngeliePangilinan

    Can we talk about your mug? I love it!

    Angelie // Chocolate Hills ATV Tour – Bohol

    • Diana Maria

      I love collecting mugs, I may have an unhealthy obsession! Thank you xx

  • Things are clear now, Diana. I’ve been thinking about this a lot. I’m quite scared thinking that this is an illness. I may be funny for thinking that but thanks to you all things are clearer now. I am always physically present but mentally absent! It is becoming alarming especially when I am in a meeting and can’t quite grasp all the information I must catch. Thanks for the meditation tips. I’ll give them a try.

    Xeph | engineerxeph.com

    • Diana Maria

      It’s so easy to think there’s something wrong with us, or to want to diagnose what we think is happening so I know how you feel! I’m glad you feel better Xeph, so many people go through this myself included. Thank you for reading, I hope the meditation tips help out!

  • Gorgeous post and love the pictures!
    a life of a charlotte
    x

    • Diana Maria

      Thanks Charlotte!

  • awesome photos and such a great post!

    Zunera xx
    https://zunera-serena.com/

    • Diana Maria

      Thank you Zunera xx

  • Emily

    Mindfulness is something I’ve only actually recently got to grips with but I’m a big fan. I try to find the time every day to bring myself back to the moment and to appreciate the here and now.

    Musings & More

    • Diana Maria

      Me too, it’s such a great practice! Thanks for reading Emily xx