“30 Day New” – Day 16 – When folks ask me how they can tell they are “in the moment” I often tell them to start by focusing on the water and soap when they are washing their hands. This simple task draws you into the moment and out of your head. For yesterday’s “New” I decided to be in the moment each time my hands touched water. I truly thought I had this one, no problem.
Surprise! I think I remembered to focus on the gentle and comforting sensations of washing my hands about 20% of the time. I was so often in my head that I didn’t even remember my commitment until much later in the day, even though I started the day off reminding myself of my goal. I was amazed at how many times I finished tasks involving water before I remembered what I was supposed to be doing.
So my “New” today is replay of yesterday to help me develop my awareness. I have already failed at least 4 times, which means I am on auto-pilot way too often; I have my work cut out for me.
Day 16 Results – I am now committed to further exploring my auto-pilot dependency for the entire weekend. I am giving myself today, tomorrow and Sunday to refocus my attention on this task. Wish me luck and, please feel to join me.
All you have to do to accept this gentle mindfulness challenge is to commit to trying to fully focus on being in the moment each time your hands touch water this weekend.
Here are a few of the ways I plan to be more mindful . . .
- Be aware of the water, the way it looks and the intensity of the flow, how it feels as it cascades over your skin.
- Pay attention to the way the soap glides over and suds up on your hands.
- Watch liquid soap drip. Notice its color, the way it reflects in the light.
- Pause for a moment after washing your hands and notice how they feel when they are wet. Slowly reach for the towel to dry them.
I have posted notes by my sinks to remind myself I want to slow down and redirect my thoughts. (After yesterday and this morning, I know I need all the help I can get, and that is okay. )
Mindfulness matters – moment to moment, minute to minute. Each and every time I am successfully “in the moment” the rewards are amazing. It feels like a taking a deep breath outdoors on a cool morning, a mini vacation or the relaxation of a comforting spa treatment. It’s refreshing and a great way to center myself and my thoughts and to give my brain a much need break.
Let me know how it goes for you! Don’t worry about doing it right, any time we savor the moment we are ahead of the game. Enjoy.
To read more about why I am developing my “30 Days New” habit, click here.