Over the course of the last several years I began a journey into improving my mindset as well as developing a mindfulness practice. This initially started as a way to manage stress and improve my almost 25-year battle with insomnia. What I have gotten out of it has been much more than I ever expected. Today I want to walk you through three easy things that I have been doing consistently that you can start today to improve your mindset (maybe even your stress level and your sleep). These practices didn’t all start at the same time so don’t feel you need to take on all three at once. Start with one and then add another as it fits into your routine.
I have completely fallen in love with journaling. There, I said it. I am not sure what about journaling intimidated me at first, but I remember thinking that it needed to be “more structured” when I first approached it. I felt like maybe I wasn’t doing it right. The truth is, there isn’t a right or a wrong way to journal. I don’t follow any prompts and I don’t use anything fancy. I find I get the most benefit when I just let my thoughts flow. I practice writing in my journal daily and try to make it part of my morning routine. I have found that this gets all the “noise” out of my head and allows me to think more clearly.
After I had been journaling for a few weeks I noticed that my sleep was better. I have been dealing with insomnia in some form or another for about 25 years. It comes and goes but the journaling has been the most consistent aid to my sleep in all that time. I used to have to rely on things like melatonin or sometimes even prescription sleep medications. Now I can sleep for 8-9 hours some nights!
I have had a bumpy road with the practice of meditation. I tried it years ago but was too impatient when I wasn’t “good” at it right away. I simply couldn’t quiet my mind and that drove me crazy, so I gave up. When I was living in Tennessee back in 2018, I met a doctor who had been trained self-guided meditation by monks. He taught one on one classes and I decided to take one. It totally changed my perception on meditation. My practice at that time wasn’t always daily, but it has become daily over the last year and a half. I don’t have to meditate for long to get a pretty significant benefit.
If you are new to meditation, I would suggest trying a simple guided meditation. There are a ton of great apps out there like Headspace and Calm that will walk you through a meditation that will appeal to you. Being patient with yourself when you are starting is key. You probably aren’t going to be great right away, and that’s ok. Commit to a few minutes each day.
This is probably one of my favorite aspects of my daily practice. I am a very visual person, so it is really easy for me to get super immersed in my visualizations and for them to have a deeply relaxing quality to them. On the same hand I feel incredibly energized when I finish. I have been actively practicing visualization for about a year and a half daily, but it started less consistently many years before that. I visualize about many different things. Sometimes it is business related, sometimes personal. The great part is there is not wrong way to do this either. You want to find a quiet space, similar to where you would meditate, and allow your mind to relax. Different from meditation you are going to direct your mind where to go. You will envision the scenario you want to play out. If it is related to racing and the next race, the perfect lap, etc. then you mentally walk yourself through that. Smelling all the smells, feeling everything you would feel, hearing everything as though you were there. Visualization is incredibly powerful.
I incorporate all three of these mindfulness practices into my daily routine. I can honestly say that in the last few years that it has made me a better, healthier person. I sleep better and I am less stressed overall. Which of these are you going to commit to starting today? Need help working on your mindset? Get in touch. Click the schedule call button for your free call today.