Blog Author: Niya Bush, Intern Counselor
The month of June represents an abundance of essential turning points in our lives, such as the end of the school year and the beginning of summer for rest and relaxation. June is also a powerhouse month that is jam-packed with incredible things we celebrate, appreciate, and recognize to increase awareness. We celebrate Juneteenth, LGBTQI Pride, highlighting the importance of Men’s Health, National PTSD, and Safety awareness. Some honorable mentions are National Turkey lover’s Month, National DJ Month, and Adopt a Cat Month.
As we celebrate the individuality and resiliency of others, let’s not forget our own needs during all the summer fun. We must practice daily mindfulness to promote personal freedom and empowerment for increased mental health. We often feel like life is too fast paced to slow down and believe we are too busy or too distractible to be mindful and in the present. Those are precisely the times when we need to pause, slow down and focus on the here and now. Mindfulness allows for building a better sense of self based on self-compassion, acceptance, and kindness and opens us up to participate fully in the stuff of life. Strengthening our ability to stay in the present moment is beneficial to our overall well-being and life satisfaction. As with anything, mindfulness takes a little patience and practice but will some effort; it can be a game-changer in our daily lives. Here are some ways to go within to ground ourselves this month.
Mindfulness Cheat Sheet
Pause. Take a moment to stop what you are doing. Step out of the stream of habit, repetition, and automaticity and become aware of the present moment.
Find an anchor. This could be your breath, your body, or what you see, hear, taste, touch, or smell. Wrap your attention around that anchor.
What do you notice? Describe as accurately and objectively as you can what you notice in the moment.
Bring mindful qualities. As you notice, see if you can let go of any struggle with what’s in the moment. Allow whatever shows up to be as it is. Breathe into the experience and soften up around it.
What matters? Now ask yourself, if you were able to choose an action that was consistent with the kind of person you’d like to be, what action would that be?
Mindfulness is a powerful skill that can help us become aware of our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. We can then make better choices and take actions that improve our peace of mind, health, and connections. This month, while we show honor to others, do not forget to celebrate yourself by carving out some time to be mindful and appreciate all you are. Enjoy!