It's not what you look at, it's what you see
As part of my daily meditation practice, I take something ‘automatic’ and boil it down to it’s basics. As an example, I spend ~30 minutes putting moisturiser on my face. These are some of the ways I practice mindfulness in this process.
I concentrate on:
- The weight of the object in my hand
- The smell of the cream
- The colours of the pot
- The different shapes the cream has taken inside the pot
- The shapes of the writing
- The feeling of the cream on my fingers
- The feeling of my cream touching my face, and the sensations that come with it
- My face, touching it, noticing the bumps and shapes
- The movement of the cream as I massage it into my skin
- The muscular movement in my hands as I massage the cream
- The goodness the cream has enriched into my skin
Suddenly, you realise it’s not just a pot of moisturiser. It’s an object with a multitude of interactions and properties. You begin to see that there’s more than meets the eye if you choose to slow down. This is a metaphor for life. The more you practice this in your daily life, removing the automatic nature of everything we do, the more you notice the small things in life, the more simple your life becomes because you need less of a ‘high’ or a ‘buzz’ to find happiness.
You begin to enjoy the process, for the process has a multitude of complexity that you did not percieve before. This is a real step change for our rushing minds that are constantly fixated on the end goal, and then the end goal after that….
We live our lives at such a pace that seeing simplicity is almost impossible, how can you see the magic of a strawberry, and all it’s structure, flavours, smells, weight, colours, textures if you are eating lunch whilst doing your work? But I have no time to slow down I hear you ask, “I will have time in the future to do this”, understand that there is only this moment now and you have the choice to either start adopting it or to continue living life in blur.
I am learning to live again, practicing this on a daily basis, removing the need to constantly be distracted. Whether it be walking, brushing my teeth, washing the dishes, typing on my keyboard, they are all meditations. If you can find joy in the ‘percieved’ mundane things in life, then that’s pretty cool. You are happy with less, you notice small moments, and you live more in line with nature which offers us a multitude of beauty if we have the eyes to see it.
I found practicing regular meditations, no matter how big or small is the best way to engrain this into your life. Don’t expect yourself to be mindful right away, but with time you notice more and more of the present moment, be kind to yourself and don’t expect overnight results. It is proven that regular meditation changes the structure of the brain.