"When the mind, body and spirit work as one,

anything is possible"

Chris Angel

Mindfulness: During the Time of Quarantine.

Updated: Jul 21, 2020

Stress is the body's reaction to a source that demands change or adjustment. Stress is normal, but it is harmful when it is uncontrollable and excess stress causes different diseases. Thus, stress management is very important for protecting our mind-body serenity. Read more on stress and anxiety: Stress or Anxiety? Know the difference.

Man is a social being and social-distancing caused by COVID-19 has brought a situation that is unusual for us. We are trying to cope up with this "new normal", still the stress and anxiety about this pandemic are never reducing.

Last day a friend of mine asked me "what do you do during stress?" I answered that I meditate or practise mindfulness and he goes "oh, that's a textbook answer!". But the truth is we cannot control a stressful situation, but we have the power to control our mind and body. We worry about the situations that are not controllable (especially these days)- our past and the future. We cannot change the past nor we can do anything that is going to happen and these thoughts can increase our stress and anxiety. The only thing we can do is work on our present. The best way for this is by practicing Mindfulness.

Mindfulness is the quality of being completely aware of the present. It is a state of being. As the word says, we are "mindful" about the present in a non-judgemental way. It is when we criticize or evaluate any situation, stress arises. In mindfulness practise, we observe and be aware of the present by accepting it.

"Do not dwell in the past, do not dream about the future,
Concentrate the mind in the present moment."
--- Buddha 🌼

You do not have to be a yogi or a zen person to practise mindfulness. We can practice mindfulness and still lose our temper, that is normal! Studies and experiences show that mindfulness can help us to calm our minds and relax our bodies so that we can accept reality. Anybody can do mindfulness! Here are some mindfulness meditation practices for beginners.

Mindfulness for beginners

1. Mini- Mindfulness Meditation (3-5 mins)

Sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes. Take a deep breath.

Bring awareness to your thoughts.

Now bring your awareness to your breath.

Expand your awareness slowly to your body and the five senses.

Be there for how much time you want and come out of the meditation with a loooooong breath out.

2. Square Breathing Exercise (5 mins)

Breathing exercises not only affect your mind but also your body. Sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes.

We are going to practice controlled and deliberate breathing.

Bring your attention to your breath, Now

•Breathe in for 4 secs •Hold for 4 secs •Breathe out for 4 secs •Hold for 4 secs (repeat)

3. 5 senses Mindfulness Exercise (2 mins)

Notice things sensing through five senses. Do not judge but just sense it.

5 things that you can see (observe new things)

4 things you can feel

3 things you can hear

2 things you can smell

1 thing you can taste

4. Mindful Eating

Many times we eat without our consciousness. We are busy watching TV or using our phones or even talking to someone.

Mindful eating is concentrating and being aware of the process of eating. You can practice this with any food or a bite of food.

Be aware of the body when you prepare to eat.

Take the food in your hand and smell the food.

Notice how your body reacts and how your mouth feels.

After putting the food in your mouth, be aware of each taste you experience and how the mouth waters.

Listen to the sound of the food when you chew it and notice how the food is changing its form.

Now slowly swallow the food and be mindful of the process. Continue it.

You can be mindful while doing anything. You can practice mindful walking, mindful driving, mindful reading, mindful listening, mindful seeing and even mindful dancing. All these above activities help you to be aware of your present and calm yourself, saving you from the stress of unnecessary thoughts.

"Mindfulness is a way of befriending ourselves and our experience."
--- Jon Kabat-Zinn🌸

5. The Train of Thoughts Exercise

Observing your thoughts and learning how to avoid emotional attachments is necessary for calming your mind.

Sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes.

Imagine you are sitting on a railway platform and trains are passing by. These trains are your thoughts.

Observe the thoughts that appear in your mind. Do not judge or get involved. Consider it as a train on which you do not want to travel and let the thought pass.

Keep noticing the thoughts that pass like trains and you are just an observer.

6. Willing Hand Excercise

When the mind cannot accept something, we feel angry, irritated or tense. We should find a way to accept the emotions or feelings that trouble us, this helps us to have a happy mind-body connection.

Sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes.

Imagine a situation that has emotionally troubled you a lot.

Remember the emotions, now clench your fists as tightly as possible. Notice the feelings building in you.

Now release the grasp and open your fists letting the feelings go!

7. Half- Smile Technique

Some of you who have learnt psychology must have heard of the Facial Feedback Theory. It is proved that

facial expressions have a direct influence on the experience of emotions. We can trick the mind to feel happy using our facial expressions.

Sit/stand with a neutral face- a relaxed face. Now slowly start smiling curving the corners of your lips.

When you feel tension are the corners of your lips- Stop!

Now hold it for 5-10 mins.

You can feel your body and mind relaxing.

SMILE has the power to change everything into positive.

8. Gratitude meditation🙏🏼

Gratitude is a quality we should practice every day. Many times we feel low thinking about the things we do not have. During Covid-19 many of us had to let go of our plans and we curse this year. But we forget to be thankful for having many other things in our lives.

Sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes.

Scan your body for any tightness. Now take deep breaths and send it to all parts of the body.

Keep a smile on your face and now think of all the things you are grateful for in your life.

Take a few breaths and now think of one BIG thing that changed your life.

Think of the people you have in your life that make you feel special.

Last, think of all the small things you have never thought of, but you want to be thankful for. Eg: The car you own. Now take a deep breath in and release feeling blessed. 😊

9. Loving- Kindness Meditation

Love and kindness are the two things we should have the most in our lives. Love is important for a better life and during this time of pandemic and social-distancing, everyone deserves to be loved. Kindness is a quality we should show not only to others but also to oneself. Love and kindness give us hope for longer life. Every DIS- EASE can be healed through love and kindness. Here is a short mindfulness meditation to cultivate natural compassion towards oneself and others.🌺

Sit comfortably with eyes closed (the same drill!)

Relax and observe your breath.

Imagine yourself through the eyes of someone who loves you unconditionally. Wish yourself well.


Think about someone whom you care about. Wish them well.


Think of someone whom you do not know (someone whom you see daily). Wish them well.


Think about someone whom you hate or do not like. Wish them well. It might be hard..... but do it!

Breathe... Open your eyes with a smile. 💖

10. Tension- Release Meditation

Daily tensions and worries not only affect your mind but also your body. These tensions can get trapped between your muscles causing pains, aches and other troubles. Relaxing your mind and body helps in removing the stress and alleviating the aches from the body. During the quarantine, it is very important to take care of your body and mind for better immunity. Here is a short body scan- tension releasing meditation.

This is a recording of the Tension- Release Meditation guided by Vidyamala Burch (one of the 100 most influential disabled people in the UK on theShaw Trust Power100 list ), Breathworks. You can listen to it and practice this mindfulness meditation

Click here for Tension-Release Meditation📢

"Our life is shaped by our mind,
for we become what we think."

There are many other mindfulness exercises that you can be practised on a daily basis which helps you in removing stress, depression and anxiety. Mindfulness can help you in calming your body and mind, thereby improving your health. During this social-distancing, it is very much important to have good food, exercise, meditation and sleep. These are the 4 secrets for improved health and immunity.

You can read more on mindfulness and download other meditation technique recordings in The Free Mindfulness Project.

Stay safe ...

Stay healthy. ❤️

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