How to cultivate mindful habits in a high-energy world
Excitement, drive, focus, goal setting… Any of this sound familiar? It’s a constant rearrangement to find the right balance but cultivating mindful habits can help strike that balance.
When you finally set goals, the next step is to seek out ways to achieve them. We aspire to be organised and motivated and admire others who seem to have it nailed.
And, for many, there is a moment of self-satisfaction before the hunt begins for the next project (and I for one have this propensity). It’s an exhilarating feeling to constantly step into the feeling of “winning” and “fist punching” the air, that sense of YES, I did it! All that energy of excitement is leaping out of your body and it’s intoxicating to those around you; it’s contagious. But what happens when that high energy drops?
While our attention has been preoccupied with our outside world, we’ve forgotten to tap in and spend time in our inside world (within ourselves)…
It takes quite a lot of effort to keep yourself going at this pace and level of intensity. It’s a constant push of energy from the body to the outside world. It does work and you always feel like you’re in action mode, but this is where the habit of searching for that “high” comes in. What most don’t realise is that at this high level of intensity, a common thread comes into our daily existence: stress. For some of us, we can use stress as a motivator to urge us forward, to keep us going. However, constant unmanaged stress is the prelude to anxiety. It’s this drop of energy that moves from excitement to stress to anxiety that can be our unravelling if we’re unable to know when and where to unwind throughout our day.
The drop in energy is actually a depletion of our vitality that we’re not replenishing, we’re not recharging. The drop can hit us hard and leave us feeling quite flat and despondent not understanding our emotions. While our attention has been preoccupied with our outside world, we’ve forgotten to tap in and spend time in our inside world (within ourselves), checking in to see what’s needed, how we feel about our direction, if our actions are supporting our emotional wellbeing. Here is where I strongly encourage mindful habits to come into our daily routine.
Here are a couple of mindful habits that you can add to your day:
- For one minute, focus on one of your senses (seeing, feeling, hearing, smelling) and just observe.
- For example, seeing: find a spot in front of you to softly focus on and just breathe.
- This helps realign your back into a neutral position and softens any intensity.
- Place two hands on your belly button and breathe slowly to your hands.
- On the inhale, push your stomach out and pause.
- On the exhale, press your belly button towards your spine and hold.
- Repeat this for 45-60 seconds.
- This will gently bring you back into your body.
- One of my favourites, the “Wonder Woman” pose.
- Stand with feet hip-width apart, hands on hips.
- Now imagine dropping your weight into your pelvis and just breathe deeply for one minute.
- This will increase your energy in a very grounded manner.
Any resistance that you experience is stress that the body, mind and emotions have been retaining. These mindful habits are a soft pause to let this go and the breath is what connects the mind to the body and emotions; it’s a reset.
It’s not about going from one extreme to the other or completely disconnecting from your outside world, but about including both aspects of how you see AND feel about yourself, giving yourself time to observe how you respond to what’s around you from within.
There’s a time for high energy, a time for mindfulness and then there are those times you can combine the two together. Using the two together is a powerful skill that impacts both your worlds, inside and out, and watch the ripple effect it has on those around you!