Mindfulness is going mainstream! It is one of the hottest trends in spa, medical and corporate wellness. This concept is new to so many people in the western world, but it is an ancient practice that dates back in time to the days of Buddha. Not so new at all! What is all the fuss about? Scientific and evidence-based studies show that mindfulness can be effective in treating many ailments including anxiety, depression, chronic pain, eating disorders, high blood pressure and stress. Do you want to improve your memory, focus, creativity and interpersonal skills? Mindfulness has been shown to be the path to numerous cognitive benefits too.
Mindfulness is about being aware "on purpose." However, being aware on the surface is not enough. You may be aware that you are having a meal but being mindful is noticing the details of the moment. Flavors, textures, aromas, even the act of chewing are all part of the present experience to be embraced without judgment. Wikipedia defines mindfulness as "the psychological process of bringing one's attention to the internal and external experiences occurring in the present moment, which can be developed through the practice of meditation and other training."
Those of us who are yogis, monks, practice meditation or prayer in groups or when alone, understand the benefits of mindfulness. Being in the moment in our everyday lives can also serve as a healthful way to work, play and enjoy almost anything we do. Some examples are:
• Practicing a golf swing
• Walking in nature
• Playing with a child
• Cooking or baking by following a new recipe
• Creative endeavors like writing, playing an instrument, painting or designing
We spend about 95% of our time indoors. Surprisingly, we often decorate our homes and offices with very little thought. Our process is often, "Let's put a picture on that empty wall." or "I have a piece of furniture that might fit there." We are deeply influenced by the spaces we spend our time in, so why not be mindful of the design of our interiors? Have you asked yourself how you want to feel when you are in your home or office? What messages do you want to send to yourself? You may want to feel energized and focused in your office. At home, you may want to feel safe, happy, relaxed. Your conscious choices can create the life you dream of having. These are all great reasons to pay attention to the design of your space.
Here are a couple of my favorite mindful Feng Shui secrets:
1. The entrance of your property is called the Ming Tang. It is the transitional area from outdoor energy to your personal indoor energy. Clear all clutter from the Ming Tang. A cluttered entrance leaves no room for fresh chi energy and for new opportunities to enter your life.
2. What statement do you want to make to yourself and others when entering your space? With conscious intention, place a piece of art in your entrance that represents your dreams and desires. This is an opportunity to write your own story and tell it to all who enter. For a business, you should have a sign with the company name easily within view, to better orient your guests.
3. Every color has its own vibration, and that is why the human eye recognizes the different colors of the spectrum. Each vibration has its own energies, so be mindful when selecting your color palette.
ENERGY CHARACTERISTICS OF THE FIVE ELEMENTS CHART
Color Season Direction Weather Personality
FIRE Red Summer South Heat Passionate
EARTH Yellow Late Summer Center Thunder Dependable
WOOD Green Spring East Wind Expressive
METAL White Autumn West Cold Precise
WATER Black Winter North Rain Adaptable
A droplet of water cannot be separated from a stream or the ocean, as we cannot be separated from the environments where we spend time. Notice your surroundings and be mindful when designing your interior, because your choices have the power to strengthen your intentions, elevate your mood and enhance all areas of your life.