How to Cultivate Inner Peace & Happiness through Mindfulness

Happy September y'all! I'm sad summer is slowly coming to an end but I did enjoy the past few months a lot and discovered mindfulness—the art of being aware of the present moment, including feelings, sensations, sounds, and thoughts, without judgment. My friend let me borrow The Four Agreements by don Miguel Ruiz, a self-improvement book, which further sparked my interest for practicing mindfulness (it's a great read and I highly recommend checking it out).

Mindfulness fosters great health benefits like reduced stress and anxiety and increases levels of inner peace and happiness. Additionally, it also improves interpersonal relationships.

Here are some easy ways to be more mindful:
Focus on your breath
When you feel calm, notice how you're breathing versus when you feel more intense emotions. Whenever I feel overwhelmed, I remind myself to take and hold deep breaths in and out.

Focus on what you're doing
Instead of multi-tasking or being on auto-pilot, try focusing on what you're intended to do, whether it's driving, walking, or even eating. Be in the present and don't let other things distract you. I used to eat and use my phone at the same time because I felt like it was a good opportunity to catch up in the digital world but this actually disabled me from fully enjoying my meal and also caused me to overeat or feel hungry faster.

Free any judgment
Let go of any judgment you have on people and things and it will open doors to new experiences.

Accept the way things are and let go of whatever happened in the past. If you make a big deal of what you can't change and aren't willing to accept the situation for what it is, you will only cause suffering upon yourself.

Be grateful
Keep a gratitude journal and jot down a few things you're grateful for. It will help you have a deeper appreciation for what you have and leave you feeling more optimistic.

Respond, not react
Responding involves thought and awareness whereas reacting involves automation and emotions. Take a few moments to think about what you want to say or do.

Free any assumptions and expectations

Most of the time, we set ourselves up to disappointment by having assumptions and expectations. If there's something you're not understanding, directly communicate with the person. Also, understand that some people say or do things because of their current emotions so don't take it personally.
Do you practice mindfulness? Let me know how you stay peaceful and happy.

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