Danielle Ibelema, MD
I Don't Have Time For Mindfulness
Learn how to add mindfulness or meditation practices to your day-- even when you're short on time.
Mindfulness is a practice of acceptance, and awareness sans the need to label and judge reality. It promotes a state of stillness through the act of surrendering of the mind to the present moment. Mindfulness has been shown to reduce stress, improve anxiety, depression and other chronic illnesses.
The most common concern that prevents patients from adding mindfulness to their day is a concern for time. Patents assume that mindfulness requires a lot of time or planning. Yet, that's actually not the case.
"You should sit in meditation for twenty minutes every day – unless you’re too busy; then you should sit for an hour.”
– Zen Proverb
How Can I Practice Mindfulness?
If you are new to mindfulness work, you can consider starting with a local yoga class or using an app on your phone for a guided meditation. If life has left you feeling more isolated than usual, perhaps a yoga class could offer the social connection that you need.
If time is limited, consider downloading an app such as Calm, Headspace or Insight Timer to use the guided meditation or muscle relaxation activities.
What if I don't have time to be Mindful?
Mindfulness is something that can be incorporated into your normal actives. You can intentionally eat in a more mindful day. You can practice connecting to the present moment on your daily walks with your dog. You can show mindful restraint in traffic when that car cuts you off. And the other scheduled mindfulness techniques don't have to be time consuming.
I encourage my patients to meditate or engage is some type of mindful activity for at least 10 minutes a day. The crucial piece is that you select a method that is meaningful to you and one that fits in with your lifestyle and needs.