Establishing an Informal Practice of Mindfulness

As previously mentioned, mindfulness is a way of life that can be practiced both formally
and informally. We want to invite you to begin incorporating mindfulness into your daily
activities as a way of decreasing panic.
Bringing mindfulness into your life is very important in dealing with panic. As with
formally practicing mindfulness, you can do this every day. Daily mindfulness brings
awareness into your body, emotions, and thoughts in the varied experiences of everyday
living. You can bring mindfulness to chores, work, walking, driving, brushing your
teeth, folding laundry, waiting in line, sitting in the doctor’s office, your interpersonal
relationships, and all aspects of life. The only moment you ever really live in and the only
place you can ever make any changes is right here and now, so why not be mindful of
this moment?
To begin an informal practice of mindfulness, you can start with any of the
suggestions below. The more you do them, the more they’ll become integrated into your
life. Accomplish at least one task each day mindfully. In other words, while you’re doing
something, just be doing that one thing, fully present and attentive to what you’re doing.
There’s no need to be a perfectionist here—it won’t be possible to be mindful of all of
these activities all the time—but slowly you can do more activities mindfully. Remember,
the moment you realize you aren’t present, you are. It’s that close and yet that far. Let
there be a spirit of levity, kindness, and self-compassion with this practice of mindfulness
—this is why it’s called a practice. Don’t feel as if you have to “get it right” every time.
When you wake up, take a mindful breath and then notice and acknowledge how
you’re feeling in your body and mind.
-While getting dressed, be mindful of the clothes you’re selecting for the day.

Notice how they feel when you put them on.
-While brushing your teeth, just be brushing your teeth.
-While preparing and eating breakfast, be mindful of the preparation and how the food tastes.
-While washing the dishes, just be washing the dishes.
-While folding the laundry, be mindful of the folding and how it’s feeling.
-While walking, just be walking. Notice each step.
-While driving to work, drive the speed limit, turn off the radio, and be aware of driving your car. Notice the way your body feels while driving,
-At work, be mindful of your work duties and your interactions with others.
At least once a week, eat a meal in silence, without distractions— radio, TV,
newspaper, and so on—using the time to just experience eating


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