WHAT IS MINDFULNESS?
Many of us lead very busy lives but at the moment, for some of us, the pressures are slightly different. We've gone from rushing from place to place to being in front of a screen a lot of the time. We can't get out and about as much and we can't take part in the activities we love. This can all have a knock on effect on how we are feeling and our mental health.
But... MINDFULNESS MINUTES is a project we can use to help us! It combines our mental health with our environment!
What is mindfulness you may ask? Well... Mindfulness is about being aware of what is going on around us and learning from what we find. It's about paying full attention to our senses and not just being swept away in our busy brains. It's about giving ourselves time to reconnect with our environment and having time for us.
At first, you may find it difficult to 'switch off', 'clear your mind' and 'stop thinking'. Don't worry about this, simply come back to the moment and swoosh those thoughts away.
WHAT DOES MINDFULNESS MINUTES INVOLVE?
So, Mindfulness Minutes is all about switching off those devices and screens and taking some time out to reconnect. Dedicate actual time to being mindful. Record how much time you spend doing this and notice the benefits it has. Do you feel refreshed? Do you feel calmer? Have you noticed a change?
We will record how much time we spend doing this as a school and put it towards our school grand total and the country's grand total of MINDFULNESS MINUTES!
WHAT ACTIVITIES CAN I DO TO BE MINDFUL?
Here is a suggestion of certain activities you may want to try during your Mindfulness Minutes:
- Take a walk around your local area but don't just walk- listen for birds, look for flowers or trees, watch the clouds, listen closely to the crunch of leaves and the whistle of the wind.
- Spend some time in the garden- look closely at plants, flowers and leaves. Do you have any nature in your garden?
- Watch the clouds! Go outside or sit at a window and watch the clouds roll past. Can you see shapes in the clouds?
- Watch the birds outside and count how many you see or notice the different types you see.
- Create a nature collage of leaves, twigs, acorns and all other natural things. As you do this, feel the textures and look at the colours.
- Plant some bulbs or seeds and spend time each day watching them so you notice them growing over time.
- Listen to the sounds of nature or a relaxing story. Close your eyes as you do this and picture walking through a forest or walking along a calm beach.
- Do some mindfulness colouring- take notice of every colour and every shape. Focus on the paper and how calm you feel.
- Sit outside in the garden and just listen to what you can hear, see what you can smell and think about what you can feel.
- Have a lovely mug of hot chocolate and some biscuits. Think about the tastes, the textures, the sound of the crunch and the sweetness of the chocolate.
- Mold some clay or dough and think about the texture and feeling as you do.
- The list is endless...
Whatever you decide to do, aim to switch off your other thoughts and focus on that very moment and your 5 senses!
Remember, whatever you pick to do, it should be screen free.