Be happy in the moment; that's enough.
Each moment is all we need, not more.
Increased presence is one of the most wonderful gifts of mindfulness practice.
It is that feeling of spontaneous aliveness and alertness when fully available, in the present moment, to receive what life is serving up.
Take yourself back to the last time you arrived in an unknown or exotic place. The sounds, the smells, the colours all compete for attention as you try to take it all in. The experience is physical, visceral, vital and totally captivating.
This is presence.
This is a very useful introductory practice that can be done with any number of people without thinking about posture or even closing the eyes.
There are three stages to this practice. Follow along and notice the impact of the instructions upon awareness.
1) Become aware of your surroundings. Look around. Really drink in the scene. Silently name some of the things that are obvious and visible. Be specific and pay attention to details that might otherwise be glossed over. Take your time as you scan and notice.
2) Notice yourself in the picture. Consider that there is a meeting occurring in this moment between you (the subject) and your surroundings (the object). See if you can hold the acknowledgement of both yourself and your surroundings simultaneously.
3) There is always something to appreciate in every moment, even if only the next breath of life.
4) Reflect upon the uniqueness of this moment:
Perhaps this is the first time trying this exercise, the first time purposefully deciding to welcome increased presence.
5) Without looking too far, it will be possible to find something unique and special within every moment of every day.
6) As you become more present, see how long the focus can be sustained. Notice more and more of your surroundings, meet them and find something to appreciate.
7) Take five breaths here.
8) Finally, notice how you feel.
9) What, if anything, has changed in your awareness since the exercise began.
Record your experience in your Mindfulness Journal noting in particular which part of the practice you found most rewarding.
If practicing with others, take turns sharing your discoveries.
This practice is an extract from 100 Mindfulness Meditations: The Ultimate Collection of Inspiring Daily Practices by Neil Seligman published by Conscious House and available on Amazon priced £12.99.
10 Mindfulness Meditations is an album of audio meditations to accompany the book and is now available on iTunes priced £7.99
Neil Seligman is the Founder of The Conscious Professional, home of Corporate Mindfulness, Resilience and Wellbeing Solutions.
Also offering 1-1 Mindfulness Coaching, Conscious Life Coaching and Luxury Mindfulness Retreats at Champneys.