Welcome to this week’s Mindful Monday!
Another Monday means another fab excuse to practice mindfulness. I am loving writing about a whole manner of different ways to be mindful, as it is even helping me to find new ways to incorporate it into my life! This last week, I have finally got back into the swing of University, and have struggled to balance work, catching up with friends, time for myself, more work, and extra curricular opportunities. All of the stress that this has amounted to, has left me with the perfect opportunity to be mindful.
Today, the focus is going to be on goals, and goal setting.
No matter whether you’re a student, an entrepreneur, a housewife or in practically any job in the world, you are bound to have certain goals in your life that you want to fulfil. Personally, my goals are very study-orientated, and usually arise around the topic of lecture notes, seminar work, scheduled reading and assessment preparation. Goals can be short-term, or they can be long-term, following the similar concept of a ‘5 year plan’, or future aspirations. No matter what your goals are, they are such a crucial part in our lives, and in our personal growth and development. For me, setting goals are a great way to keep me grounded, and make me realise exactly what I have to do, to get to the position that I want to be in. In some ways, they are hugely beneficial in lowering my levels of stress and anxiety, because I am able to lay them all out on paper and write down the steps that I can take to achieve them. This allows me to be totally present and in the moment, rather than letting my mind drift off into the clouds with the hope that some day I might achieve them.
I usually set and review my goals every week. From now on, I will continue to do this every Monday, to ensure that I am initiating mindfulness into my week without fail. Being mindful can have huge health benefits, with one of the most significant being stress reduction. Mindfulness initiates calming thoughts, and allows us to physically and mentally relax, and be at one with the world around us. This can work wonders for our overall wellbeing, if it is practiced enough, and regularly. You can incorporate this into your goal setting by giving yourself just 10 minutes to sit down with nothing but a pen and a piece of paper, to write down what your true goals are for this week, this year, the next 5 years, whatever suits you best. Whilst you’re sat, you can think about what you are already so grateful for, and what goals you have already accomplished, perhaps ones that you never thought you could. This is a great place to start if you struggle to set yourself attainable goals. Doing this can also help to settle your mind, and stop your mind from wandering to external pressures.
Personally, I set aside between 5 and 10 minutes once a week (if I can!) to write down my goals. Whilst I’m at University I tend to review my goals quite often, but this is just personal preference. Within such a short space of time, it is amazing how you can calm yourself from uncertainties of the future, and feel more at one with yourself, and with the world around you.
If you’re stuggling, here’s some things to focus on:
- Set a timer for 5 minutes, and just sit in silence. This can help to settle and balance your mind, and focus on the task ahead.
- Think of 1 positive word. For example, ‘happiness’ or ‘good health’. Think of all of the things you would like to achieve surrounding those words.
- Concentrate on the things you would really like to accomplish or change.
- Close your eyes and visualise what it is that you want to achieve. Imagine that you already have it. Bring that thought to your reality and write your goal around that perspective.
Giving yourself a short amount of time for self-reflection can have a huge impact on your overall wellbeing, and being mindful and present within this self-reflection can set you up for positivity for the days and weeks ahead. There is no better feeling than being able to tick off one of your goals, and being proud of yourself for achieving it.
I would love to hear about the kinds of goals you have created and/or accomplished, and whether or not being mindful whilst diong it made a difference to how you achieved it. Please feel free to comment below!