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8 December 2015

guest post | i am emma wilson

Hello lovely readers of Erica’s super awesome blog! I'm Emma, a Scottish blogger at i am Emma Wilson and I am seriously excited to be able to share a guest post here with you all. If you fancy coming to visit after, then that'd be pretty awesome too! 
Let’s face it, everyone seems to be getting busier and busier. Life is hectic, and exhausting and there are never enough hours in a day for everything you want to do. Sounds about right, doesn’t it? Take now, for example: it is DECEMBER! (I know, how did that happen already?) No matter how busy your life is I still believe it is important, and possible to add a little mindfulness into your day and take care of you (because you matter). 
After all, as Dr Seuss says, there is no-one alive, who is youer than you; so I thought I would share with you all my two favourite ways to add a little mindfulness into a day without any disruption. 
What is mindfulness? 
Put simply, mindfulness is becoming more aware of the present moment, paying attention to it with purpose, clarity and acceptance.

Learn to breathe again

OK, so you are busy, and maybe don’t have time to go for an hour’s yoga class at the gym. I feel you. You don’t have to, although you can, obviously, if you want. This can be done any time, anywhere, sitting, standing, lying down, in the shower, you get the idea. For one minute I want you just to let go of everything. You can do this. 
Pick a moment, and a place. For me, I like to do this twice a day, first thing in the morning before I have taken anything on, and last thing at night before I go to bed. Start right. End right. 
Breathe in, through your nose. Slowly, calmly, and deeply. For a count of five. 
Breathe out, through your mouth. Slowly, calmly, and deeply. For a count of five. 
It should feel effortless. Try to keep your body relaxed, let go of the tension and just focus on the breathing. Repeat this six times. That’s it. One minute of mindful breathing. You are, in fact, halfway towards the idea of meditation. If you have time, try and fit in more than a minute. I like to aim for ten minutes, to really let the strains wash away! 

Become more aware of things you do

Choose something you do every day. Most likely you do it without even thinking, and take it completely for granted. Maybe you are a "but first, coffee" kind of person in the morning. Take the time to really notice your cup of coffee, the warmth radiating from the mug, the aroma of the fresh brew, the comforting satisfaction in every sip. You can apply this to anything you do! 
Your mind may wander, that’s OK, notice the other thoughts when it does, and be patient with yourself. Refocus on what you were doing, and go back to being mindful of the activity. Learning to be mindful of your breathing and your thinking, together will help you unwind, relax and regain that feeling of being in control of your day. Even if it is just for a little while. 
There are of course, plenty other ways to practice mindfulness and a short while looking on Google will overwhelm you with content to read. I like to combine the breathing and thinking together into periods of meditation, being aware of my breathing, and the sensations in my body, the noises around me and trying to move past this to a feeling of calm. 
What works for one person, maybe won’t for the next so I would love it if you would share any little things you find helpful below in the comments? I'm working on a mindfulness mini-series for my blog so input is always appreciated. You can find me on Twitter and Instagram too, if you're more mobile savvy.