By Debra LeClair Psy.D.
One of the paths to truly making life changes—especially in regard to stress reduction and life balance is to do it in baby steps. Easing into a way to integrate stress prevention is a huge piece of the pie. One idea that occurred to me in the shower is to actually turn that time into one of mindful meditation. The shower is rich in sensory experience and something that we already do most days. It simply requires allowing and also steering yourself to having a different approach to this time.
To start, instead of getting lost in thought about your “To Do” list or racing through so you can get on with the next thing, lead your attention to focus on the feel of the water, as it streams from the top of your head down the entire length of your body, down to your feet. Spend time letting in all the sensations, from soaping up to rinsing off. Focus on the feel of your fingers moving over your scalp as you lather into a shampoo…Every time your mind wanders (and it will), bring it back to the experience in the here and now. Staying in the present gives you great benefit. Not only does it help you cultivate the calm, it also develops the part of the mind that allows us to concentrate and focus. In this case, you don’t have to add anything to your day; just plug into the sensations of what can be a very pleasurable part of your daily routine.