Updated: Sep 1, 2020
It's Mindful Monday! And today I’m giving you all a list of practices you can do to uplift yourself and that will help improve your mental state. Enjoy :)
When You First Wake Up, Keep Your Eyes Closed and Focus on Your Breath
Mindfulness is all about focusing on the present and using that focus to relax your body and mind. One way to practice this is by focusing on the breath, the movement of the air in through your nose and out through your mouth. Paying attention to the way your belly rises and falls with each in and out. Doing this in the morning when you first wake up is a great way to ground yourself in the present and create a snowball effect, where everything else in the day is approached with a calm and relaxed mindset.
Look in the Mirror and Show Your Body Love
Though a lot of people suggest focusing on parts of your body you already love to take your mind off of what you don’t love, I’m going to suggest the opposite: give the areas of your body you don’t love at the moment some love!
To work toward making peace with all that your body is, you have to start paying those areas attention.
For me, when I look in the mirror, I take my hands and rub my belly. I rub my belly like I’m giving it a massage. I grab my fat and say, ‘Yes, my belly is fat, and that’s OK. I love my belly’. Some days I don’t believe it, and some days, when I walk past the mirror, I can’t help but think ‘Damn, that’s a nice belly!’
Do the same. Whether it’s fat on your arms, rolls on your back, body hair, short and/or damaged hair on your head, small lips, big hands, big feet, undefined hips or whatever it is you think is a ‘flaw’. Here’s my gentle reminder to you that it is not. Everything on your body is beautiful and is meant to be there. Do NOT let these social media influencers and celebrities fool you.
Doing this everyday is a guaranteed way to change your mindset around your body for the better!
Reflect on Your Emotions Throughout the Day
‘Waking up on the wrong side of the bed’ is a real thing. Maybe it was a bad dream you had. Maybe it was what a family member said or did to you before you went to sleep. Maybe today is just...off. Whatever it is, without addressing that feeling of fear, or anger, or sadness, it will follow you throughout the day and impact how you interact with family, your environment (like dropping things or things constantly falling over in your midst), and yourself.
If you find yourself with your eyebrows furrowed while you’re sitting around or washing dishes, ask yourself, ‘What’s wrong?’ Listen to yourself; you know more than you think. Observe your body. Are your fists clenched for no reason obvious to you? What about your jaw, is that clenched, too? Tension in your shoulders or lower back?
Address these feelings. Maybe you need to sit in silence to allow those feelings to flush out. Maybe you need to vent to a friend. Maybe you have a finsta and use that as your diary so you post something on there. However you like to address your feelings, do it! Do not repress emotions; they end up festering and coming out later as something much more ugly and threatening. We’ll talk about that when we get to shadow work ;).
Laugh, Laugh, Laugh!
Laughing is a hell of a medicine and can always lift you out of the worst of moods. I recommend laughing every 👏🏾single👏🏾day👏🏾. Go watch a comedy (my recommendations are at the bottom of this post). Or go play Uno or Spades with your family; Uno or Spades with Black Families are ALWAYS hilarious. Nollywood movies are hilarious, too, or maybe you need to watch one of Jackie Aina’s videos with her crazy meme edits 😂😂.
Black Twitter is also always on go. They have me cracking up 24/7, especially with this whole Doja situation and now Azealia Banks and Dave Chapelle? Chile, Black Twitter is about to have a BALL.
Try to laugh every single day, even when you don’t feel like it. Everyone deserves a good laugh and it can bring joy into your life, even for a moment.
OK my beauties, this is all I have for this post. Y'all should definitely give these a try because I'd love for you all to have a flourishing self-love for your body and a healthy mental state.
Love and Light,
My movie recommendations for a good laugh:
Bad Boys 1-3
Coming to America
Friday and Friday After Next
And speaking of Black Twitter, follow me @_azewilliams ;)