4/15/20

Learn to Live in the Moment with This 30 Day Challenge


By on 4/15/2020 03:11:00 PM

We all seem to find things to worry and wonder about.  I know that I find things to become preoccupied with that take my focus away from my tasks at hand--and even take the joy from my day's moments.  Creating new habits (or breaking old ones) takes time.  Most experts agree that it takes 30 days to integrate a new habit or practice into your routine.   Most days, in my life, I am so busy that I struggle to add virtually anything new and different to my day's schedule.  Having said that--I also know that there are slight changes that I can make each day to slowly and gradually learn to live in the present moment.  Today, I am embarking on this 30 day challenge.  I will add a new task each and every day to the day before that I hope will help me become more mindful of my moments by the end of the month!  I am hoping that as I continue to practice each daily habit--it will become easier to add one more thing each day! Here is my 30 Day Mindfulness Challenge!

I am submitting this post in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge!  
M is for Mindfulness!

My 30 Day Mindfulness Challenge!

Day 1:    Take a Walk Outside First Thing In the Morning /5 Minute-5 Senses Break
I call this my daily wake up routine.  It is a 5 minute break outside to use my 5 senses and connect with and appreciate the new day.  I take a glass of water outside and experience a few minutes of my surroundings.  What do I hear? See? Smell? Taste?  Is there something interesting to touch?

Day 2:    Read/Write/Share a Motivational Quote
Read a quote or thought of the day--then take it one step further and handwrite notes for family or share on social media for others who may need a boost in the morning.  I share a morning quote on my Twitter account each day & post it on the dry-erase board at home for my family too.

Day 3:    Make the Day's Home/Family To-Do List
Do you have to-do items or reminders floating around in your head?  Write them down to complete on a specific day or schedule them onto your day's calendar!  Taking the time to do this will free your thoughts and help you relax and devote more time to the tasks at hand as you move through the day.

Day 4:    Exercise at least 20-30 Minutes
This can be an actual stretching/exercise routine or a walk through the neighborhood.  Focus on the feelings and the stress relief of physical activity.

Day 5:    Make/Eat a Healthy Breakfast
Focus on colors and textures and the physical process of preparing the meal.  Sit down, slow down and eat the meal with focus on the process and the activity without distractions.

Day 6:    Write Down and Practice a Daily Morning Self Care Routine 
Write down the process that you take each morning to get ready for your day.  What do you do?  What would you like to do each morning?  If you do not have a morning self care routine--create one and practice following it mindfully each morning.  

Day 7:    Focus on one Single Activity Completely--Choose a Different Activity Each Day
Choose an activity each morning--maybe brushing teeth or making coffee.  Focus on the sights, smells and feelings caused by/during every aspect of the activity. 

Day 8:    Answer a Journal Prompt 
I work through daily devotionals and create journal prompts or reflections from those.  Pick up a book of prompts or find a list of prompts online and answer one prompt each morning. 

Day 9:    Smile & Greet Everyone You Encounter in the Morning 
Make a conscious effort to smile at everyone.  Say hello.  Wave.  Interact.  Notice the way it makes you feel--and pay attention to the responses you receive. 

Day 10:  Make/Buy/Eat a Healthy Lunch  
Focus on colors and textures and the physical process of preparing the meal.  Sit down, slow down and eat the meal with focus on the process.  Set work aside.  Go away from your desk for lunch--even if you pack lunch from home.  

Day 11:  Take a Lunchtime or Afternoon Walk
Get out of the office or away from your work space and take a walk outside if possible--or through other areas of the building if possible. Focus on the area around you--forgetting about the work you are temporarily leaving behind.  

Day 12:  Take a 5 Minute 5 Senses Break 
It is a 5 minute break to use my 5 senses and connect with an activity or my surroundings.  In the afternoon, I take a break to consider experience a few minutes of my surroundings.  What do I hear? See? Smell? Taste?  Is there something interesting to touch?

Day 13:  Make a Conscious Effort to Smile at Everyone You Encounter in the Afternoon
Make a conscious effort to smile at everyone.  Say hello.  Wave.  Interract.  Notice the way it makes you feel--and pay attention to the responses you receive.  

Day 14:  Practice Mindful Breathing Every Time You Feel Tense
Practice some deep breathing--or take another 5 minute 5 senses break to refocus on your senses and the positive energies around you. 

Day 15:  Create a To-Do List /Schedule for the Next Work Day  
Make a written list with paper and pencil of your to-do list for the next work day or schedule physical times on your calendar to plan to tackle work tasks.  Writing them down will help you prevent from focusing on remembering these tasks when you are off work for the day! 

Day 16:  Leave Work at Work When you Go Home
Leave work at work when you leave work to go home.  Even if you are working from home--make a conscious effort to turn off work emails and phone calls once your work hours are finished.  This may not be 100% possible--but, I am trying to be at home with my family with zero work distractions after 6 pm every day from this day forward. 

Day 17:  De-Clutter/Fix/Energize 1 Space at Work or Home
Maybe a junk drawer, maybe the catch all table that collects junk mail and bills--maybe the coat closet.  If something is catching my attention every time I walk by it--that is going to be a daily energy drain.  I plan to choose 1 item each day to de-clutter or brighten up to help me stay focused on my moments.   

Day 18:  Make/Buy/Eat a Healthy Dinner
Focus on colors and textures and the physical process of preparing the meal.  Sit down, slow down and eat the meal with focus on the process.  

Day 19:  Have a Dinner Conversation or Write in a Journal 
Focus on the meal and have an actual conversation with the family or your housemates.  If you are dining alone--use this meal time to write reflections from the day into your journal.  

Day 20:  No Electronics/Screens During Dinner
Electronics are distractions and they take away from the mindfulness and enjoyment of sharing or experiencing a meal.  Remove them from dinner time.   

Day 21:  Read a Book/Magazine/Newspaper for 20-30 Minutes
Settle into a comfy spot after dinner and read a physical book, magazine or newspaper for 20 minutes or so.  Maybe have a family book club or create one with friends.  Make this reading a physical book so that you can touch the pages, smell the book or even magazine inserts and see the colors in a different way.  

Day 22:  No Electronics After 7pm (Except for a Movie)  Unless you are watching a movie--nix the electronics.  Find something to do rather than an image to distract you. 

Day 23:  Play a Board Game/Work on a Jigsaw Puzzle or a Crossword Puzzle
Make it a real activity that you can see, touch, and experience with your senses.  Try a simple board game or a card game--maybe work for a bit every evening on a jigsaw puzzle or a word puzzle book. 

Day 24:  Take a 5 Minute 5 Senses Break Outside in the Evening
It is a 5 minute break outside to use my 5 senses and connect with and appreciate the new day.  I take a glass of water outside and experience a few minutes of my surroundings.  What do I hear? See? Smell? Taste?  Is there something interesting to touch?

Day 25:  Spend 20 Minutes on a Hobby or a Household Chore
Do you paint, draw, knit?  Maybe you dream of writing a book or enjoy taking pictures or working with wood.  Is the garden calling your name?  Start a hobby if you don't have one and work on a project or learning a skill for that hobby just a little bit every evening as you wind down your day.  Maybe focus on turning an I Have to....like I have to wash the dishes...into an I Get to.  Notice the water, buy a dish detergent with a scent that you like, turn on soothing music and focus on finding the positive aspects of the chore at hand.    

Day 26:  Watch a Movie or Listen to Music or Simply Talk to Someone  
Spend time each day listening to something without distractions.  Have a conversation with someone.  Listen to music or watch a movie from a different genre than you usually watch. 

Day 27:  Write Down and Practice a Daily Evening Self Care Routine
Write down the process that you take each evening to get ready for bed.  What do you do?  What would you like to do each evening?  If you do not have a nightly self care routine--create one and practice following it mindfully each night. 

Day 28 : Write Down 5 Good Things That Happened During the Day
Some days this task will take some thought!  (We have all had those days!)  But--take some time and sit down each night and reflect on the day.  What were some good things that happened?  Write those positive outcomes in a journal or on post it notes or slips of paper at the end of each day.   

Day 29:  Turn off screens/lights and Electronics Over Night
Sleep in the dark.  Listen to the sounds of the house and the sounds of the night.  Let your body rest and relax in silent darkness.

Day 30:  Move cell phones out of the bedroom
If you wake during the night, don't reach for electronics.  Don't reach for the phone and distractions the moment you wake.  Move cell phones and computers out of the bedroom to make it a place of rest.


I will admit it--as I read through this list--I felt a little overwhelmed.  How will I ever fit all of those tasks into my packed schedule?  I have a feeling that my schedule isn't actually that packed--it just isn't working for me the way it should.  I am going to start slowly and add an item every day.  Who knows what may happen by the end of a month!

           

About Angela

Angela is a freelance travel writer and lifestyle blogger, blessed with 3 beautiful daughters, 5 moody cats, 1 spoiled dog, and 1 very supportive husband.

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