We’d all like to find a little peace and quiet — a sense of calmness from the frenzy of modern life.
I’ve been a devoted student of meditation for many years. In all my years exploring the mind-body connection, I’ve never experienced anything quite as profound as the power of stillness for relieving stress and restoring a sense of peace by quieting the incessant noise most of us have going on in our minds.
Another way I enjoy practicing mindfulness is by slowing down any activity throughout the day. The simple act of making tea or coffee in the morning can be anything from a perfunctory habit to a luxurious ritual, depending on how fast or slow you do it. This is because, for an act to become mindful, you literally need to allow time for the processing of sensations.
Take something as automatic as having your morning coffee or tea, and try to experience it at a slower speed. It may feel very strange at first. Notice how easy it is to become distracted by outside thoughts, and how tough it is to maintain your concentration on the experience. As you notice your mind wandering, direct it back on your sensations, and the simple act can be fascinating.
Here are a few sensations to concentrate on while mindfully making your morning coffee..of in my case, tea.
- Listen closely to each sound that is created, from the bubbling of the water to the tea sizzling when hot water is poured on top of it.
- Notice the color of the water change, little by little, as the tea steeps.
- Enjoy the fragrance as your tea continues to brew.
- Taste your morning blend, and notice how your tastebuds detect the subtle flavors.
- Hold the mug in your hands, while closing your eyes and focusing on the warming feeling in the palms of your hands.
- Feel the steam as it lightly touches your cheeks while sipping the hot liquid.
- Notice being completely present in the moment. This is mindfulness.