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Sunday, 10 July 2011

Vary your mindfulness practice

In mindfulness practice, we often try to set up a daily routine which we will follow come hell or high water - but that's a mistake.

Human beings need variety. I've been reading Sonja Lyubomirsky's The how of happiness and the importance of variety is among the strongest themes of the book.

I'm an old hand at reading self-help books (I've written a couple as well) and I'm impressed by her friendly, research-based, no-bullshit approach.

The book convinces me that the adage, "variety is the spice of life", has got it right, as so many adages actually have without benefit of laboratory research.

As human beings, we can get used to anything - even to winning the lottery - and variety is a key to keeping our experiences fresh and enjoyable.

So in practising mindfulness we would be wise to vary our practices. Luckily there are many, many mindfulness practices to draw on. Today you might practice mindfulness of sounds, tomorrow mindfulness of walking, next day mindfulness of breathing and so on. I know of mindfulness practitioners who drop all mindfulness practices for six or seven days every month or six weeks so as to keep the experience fresh.

Where to find a variety of mindfulness practices? You'll find them on this blog, in my book or in my free newsletter (email me at pomorain@gmx.com and I'll put you on the mailing list).

So if you've been finding mindfulness practice a little stale lately, try introducing some variety from the sources mentioned here.