How often do you vow to live your life in the here and now and really be aware of your surroundings, instead of going through life on autopilot? Leonardo da Vinci had the view that we could enhance our experiences of life by sharpening our senses. That’s why we want to use May as the occasion to concentrate fully on our senses and to ground ourselves – together.
If you can sharpen your senses and pay more attention, you will be more conscious of your life and feel more relaxed at the same time. Focus on the present moment, instead of mulling over past, future or apparent problems.
To sharpen are senses, there are many different exercises that can easily be made part of our everyday lives. Our advice is to find a partner so that you can sharpen your senses together and share these valuable experiences. Below you will find five exercises you can use to start bringing more mindfulness into your lives.
Wherever you may be, close your eyes for a moment and concentrate on what you can hear. Listen to any noises – near, far, loud or quiet. Observe how these sounds come out of the silence and how the quiet descends again. You could also listen to music and try to consider the various elements individually. Or you could try to listen to two different sounds at the same time.
Sit up straight, ideally cross-legged. Start by slowing allowing your breathing to become deeper. Then close your eyes as you exhale and let your breathing go back to its natural rhythm. Observe how each breath goes in and out automatically. Where does each breath begin? Where do you feel your breathing most? In your lungs? In your belly? And where does the breath end? Focus on observing the movement of your ribcage for a couple of minutes. How do you feel now compared with before starting the exercise?
If you like, close your eyes again to focus more deliberately and more intensely on individual moments. When you drink a cup of tea, for example, be aware of how your hands hold the cup, how the surface and material of your cup feel and how the hot tea warms you from the inside. You can try this exercise during any little everyday activity, even brushing your teeth or eating.
The next exercise needs to be carried out in the presence of plants: these can be indoor plants, flowers or trees outside, and all you need to do is listen to them. Feel the life in the plants, how they grow quietly, calmly and in peace. How content they are with their lives. Observe their colours and shapes and their different surfaces. Imagine the roots of the plants beneath the surface and how they connect the plant to the earth.
The last exercise we want to introduce you to takes place in the open air: on a nice day, lie outside in a field and observe the sky and the clouds as they pass overhead, completely without any judgement, either positive or negative.
We have another tip to heighten your senses – especially your taste buds: Spoil yourself with our YOGI TEA® For The Senses. These new tea creations contain the sensuous scents of precious essential oils. Carefully combined with herbs and spices, a very special tea experience comes to life.
As you can see, grounding yourself and expanding your senses doesn't have to be complicated or take much time. The exercises we have introduced you to here can be incorporated quite easily into your daily routines, so that you can feel more relaxed and calmer as you go through your daily lives.
If you would like to read more about the subject of mindfulness, I recommend reading our article on Mindful Breathing, which will tell you all about the remarkable power of mindful breathing.