During these uncertain times, have you tried doing some mindfulness exercises at home? It’s been part of my daily routine as a busy mom and I realized how powerful it is.
As mothers in general, we juggle different and heavy roles both personal and professional life. We wear multiple hats as a mom, wife, friend, playmate, business owner, and so much more! There are a lot of things on our plate and our lives are full as we tend to meet everyone’s needs including ourselves.
Believe me or not, I sometimes pause and ask myself, when do I stop, breathe, and just live without distractions? How do I maintain that balance? It’s not easy!
I am not a perfect mother but I’m so happy that I am able to work things out with Mom-Life, Work-Life, and my passion altogether.
Before we begin, I hope you have checked out our latest post on 50 SELF-CARE IDEAS FOR FIRST TIME MOMS + VIDEO. You wouldn’t believe how my little one enjoyed this dance and I can’t wait to share more of our dance workouts!
Today, I am so happy that we have a mindfulness meditator and teacher who is here to share her 5 Simple Mindfulness Exercises for Busy Mothers.
I found this very interesting with the fact that exhaustion and burnout can happen to anyone. I hope you’ll find some inspiration from this post and be able to share it with others as well.
Motherhood is hard. It is the most rewarding and difficult journey I have been on.
It consumes every moment of every day and for many mother’s sleep deprivation, ever-growing to-do-lists, busy schedules, juggling work, life, home, and all the expectations of the modern world can leave little to no time to just be you.
It is exhausting and exhilarating at the same time. The lack of control can make you lose your own identity and question your sanity.
If you’re craving calm and family harmony, want to feel like you are thriving and not just surviving or just need to discover you own self again then mindfulness could be exactly what you have been searching for.
What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is a powerful practice that can help you through all the highs and lows of motherhood and help bring out the mother in you that you want to be.
It is actually very simple to do and not half as hippy-dippy as it sounds. It is about bringing your awareness to the present moment with curiosity
and without judgment.
Have you ever watched how your child takes a drink? Like it is the best and last drink they will ever taste. This is mindfulness in its basic form.
Mindfulness cannot prevent tantrums, it cannot give you extra hours in the day and sadly it can not guarantee a full night’s sleep. But it can help give you coping mechanisms for when your patience is tested, it can help to teach you to practice self-compassion so you can be kinder to yourself and it can help you discover a greater peace and balance in your daily life through awareness.
I can’t begin to arm you with every mindfulness tip and trick in the book. Mindfulness is a practice and you need to do just that to see and feel all the wonderful benefits. Don’t worry though, I know how busy you are already.
The beauty of Mindfulness is that it is designed to fit into your life.
Regular practice is more important than the length of time you dedicate but like everything the more you put in the more you get out. If you can find a spare 5-10 minutes every day then you can practice mindfulness.
I have chosen five simple mindfulness exercises to introduce you to. There is no one shoe fits all and there are hundreds of different mindfulness exercises out there. The best advice I can give you is to read around and choose different exercises and activities to practice to see which ones work for you and your lifestyle.
Before we proceed, check out this video as we introduce to you what MamaBuzz is all about. I hope these affirmations will give you inspiration and be able to thrive the busy, yet rewarding life of motherhood.
5 Simple Mindfulness Exercises for Busy Moms
Following the Breath – I like to start all my exercises with a few minutes focusing on my breath.
To do this I sit in a comfortable but alert position and close my eyes. I bring my attention to wherever I notice my breath the most.
For me it is as the air enters and leaves my nostrils but you may notice it in your chest or as your stomach rises and falls. Focus on your breathing without trying to change it.
Notice the air as it enters your body and then stick with it as it leaves. Your mind might wander and that’s ok, just gently bring your attention right back to your breathing as soon as you notice.
You will find with regular practice your mind will start to wander less.
1. Body Scan
Close your eyes and for a few minutes just focus on your breathing. Don’t force or try and change the breath just bring your attention to it. In a comfortable position slowly start to mentally scan your body from head to toe or visa-versa.
Focus your attention on a specific body part foot, leg, knee, pelvis, stomach etc and notice how it feels, any sensations such as itchiness, pain, cold, warmth.
Note if it feels pleasant or unpleasant and then gently relax that body part and focus your attention on the next area until you have scanned your whole body.
2. Five senses
Bring your attention to the present moment and using each of your senses to note one thing you can see, one thing you can smell, one thing you can hear, can you taste anything, what can you feel, is your body making contact with something, is it cold?
This exercise will bring your mind right into the present moment.
3. Three deep breaths
You all have time for this in your day. You don’t even need to close your eyes. I like to turn up for school pick up a few minutes early (this also makes parking much simpler) and practice this before I collect the kiddy-sprinkles.
On your first deep breath, just bring your attention to how it feels as you breathe in and the oxygen flows around your body.
On your second deep breath, bring your attention to the exhale and note
how it feels as the breath leaves your body. And on your third deep breath, breath in a feeling or emotion you need – love, confidence, energy.
Breath out what you don’t need and release yourself of anxious thoughts, resentment or anger for example. I usually breathe in patience and exhale
4. Be Out Of Control
The thing I and many other mothers find hardest about parenting is the lack of control in every aspect of our lives. We are ruled by our offspring and their needs, schedules, and demands.
Accepting this fact is challenging. But practicing this feeling through mindfulness can help.
Close your eyes and practice not controlling your meditation. If thoughts appear, let them appear, don’t engage with them, or try and push them away just let them be.
If you have a scratch, see if you can just leave it unscratched. Let your meditation control itself while you bring awareness to the experiences that unfold.
This is a really impactful practice that helps you process all your thoughts and feelings without getting entangled in them. This can be done when you are actively practicing mindfulness or when you notice thoughts arising throughout the day.
When a new thought or feeling pops up try and give it a label.
Anxiety, memory, judgment, guilt, planning, idea, etc the labels don’t have to be right but by giving them a category or label you can acknowledge them as just that, thoughts.
Over time this gives you much more control and acceptance over what pops up into your mind. There are no wrong thoughts or feelings, don’t judge them or try and change them.
Just notice their presence, how they feel, and label them. It will give you the ability to acknowledge thoughts without getting lost in them. A very freeing feeling.
This is a very brief introduction to formal mindfulness exercises; Mindfulness can also be practiced throughout your day in a none formal way.
For more information and ways to practice mindfulness take a read of my in-depth mindfulness for busy mother’s post.
There are many practical practices to mindfulness such as taking a nature walk and being creative but by dedicating 5-10 minutes daily to mindfully meditate it will give you a great foundation to build mindfulness into your daily life.
Just stay open-minded, be patient, and be consistent and see how this wonderful practice can enhance your life.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Helen is the owner of I Spy a Simple Life. She discovered the power of mindfulness and self-care after having her two children and life was becoming a bit overwhelming.
She and her husband decided to downsize and relocate to search for a more simple life but in doing so, started a catalyst of very stressful events which ultimately led her to mindfulness as a way of accepting what is and raised awareness of her choices on how to react to life and situations.
It has changed her marriage and family dynamics beyond recognition and she now looks to help others on their discovery of mindfulness and self-care through her blog and online shop.