Can Mindfulness Can Give Us More Time?

How often do you feel you just don’t have enough time? That there’s so much to do and so much you want to do, but how can you fit it all into the time you have?


Mindfulness can help – even better, it’s free, and you can start right away! At the most basic level, mindfulness can just mean being aware of how you’re using your time. Once you know where all that time is going, you can make decisions about what you want to do when. If you 're going to spend hours on social media every night, go right ahead, if that’s what you want. But if you would also like to go out, play sports, learn a new language, meet up with your friends or have a family dinner, then you need to allocate your time appropriately.


What is mindfulness? Mindfulness ranges from awareness to making conscious choices, to meditation. It’s easy to make mindfulness part of your routine – not yet another task, but a useful technique that puts you in control of your life and arms you against the stresses of 21st-century living. 


And you don’t have to do it by yourself or sign up for a course or an expensive retreat.  Use technology to help you get back some time you can spend on yourself! There are so many apps and websites that can help you keep your focus on the present moment, and not sliding into a panic at all the things you must do. 


The most useful apps can help you with time management, so you feel in control of your task list (have a look at Trello or Toggl), and meditation to help you decompress and let go of all the things that are stressing you out. Best of all you don’t need a yoga mat or even a quiet room to use these – you can even meditate on the bus or train, or in a park during your break.  Insight Timer and Stopbreathethink are a couple of the most popular meditation apps.


Five mindful things you can do right now:


  1. Breathe in and give yourself some space. Just stop and breathe all the way in and all the way out – and again, and again. You’ve just lowered your blood pressure and stress levels!
  2. Decide to take back control: decide how you will use your time and how you feel about it.  
  3. Stay in the present. Don’t worry about all the things you have to do. If your mind is racing ahead thinking about the next thing, your anxiety levels will go up, and you won’t think straight. Try saying ‘right now I’m ___.’
  4. Be honest about what’s important and achievable. Remember you can say no to things that aren’t important to you right now.
  5. Prioritize! Do one thing at a time – sometimes multitasking is useful, but it’s a stressful and inefficient way to live. 


In being mindful, you’ll still have 24 hours just like everyone else, but you’ll choose how you will use it and how you’ll feel about it.