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Stuck at Home (together)

Focus through
Mindfulness

Here’s a Boost for Your Creativity

Mindfulness promotes self-awareness and attention to the present moment, and has a number of positive physical impacts as well.

  • Mindfulness enhances brain activity in different regions of the brain–improving working memory, flexible thinking, self-control, and concentration. 
  • Mindfulness meditation has been shown to reduce blood pressure and cortisol levels (a stress hormone) and increases immune system functioning.
  • Regular mindfulness meditation has shown to increase self-esteem and self-acceptance.

Try any or all of these mindfulness activities:

 

Acknowledging the Rollercoaster. Being mindful includes noticing and accepting all emotions as a part of the human experience, including challenging ones. Many of us stuck at home, may have already noticed how quickly these emotions seem to change. 

  • Begin this exercise by sitting and breathing comfortably. Then, take stock of any emotions that may be present for you in that given moment. 
  • Try to identify and name each emotion by making a list. 
  • If naming the emotions seems difficult, then visualize them by selecting a color to represent one of those feelings and draw any shape, symbol, or mark on a piece of paper to represent the presence of that feeling. The size of the mark might reflect the amount of space that particular feeling is taking up in this moment. 
  • Next ask yourself: “What more am I feeling in this moment?” Continue recording your emotions in this way until you feel finished. When finished, consider sharing your drawing with someone close to you.

Send Kind Wishes. Did you know we can often feel connected to others while physically distant? By sending well wishes, we connect to our own feelings of warmth and kindness while strengthening our feeling of connection with others. Here’s how: 

  • Bring to mind someone in the world; perhaps it is someone you know, or a generalized group of people, such as the health care workers in your city.
  • Bring an image to mind to help focus your attention on the person or group. 
  • Next, repeat the following phrases in your mind “May you be safe,” “May you be healthy,” May you move through these days with ease.” 
  • Repeat each phrase three times before moving on to the next while you continue to focus your thoughts on that person or group. Create your own phrase if you’d like. 
  • For added creativity, write your well wishes on a piece of paper, adding doodles and a decorative border. Post the resulting drawing in your window or on your door for others to see, or post it on your refrigerator as a reminder to yourself, or send it to someone who could benefit from some kindness.

Mindful Words. We know it can be difficult to focus on the present, without judgment, when it is so easy to get wrapped up in worries about the future, regrets about the past, or resistance of the present. Give your mind a gentle reminder to refocus on the present by doing this activity.

  • First, make a list of words that will remind you to think of the present. Words such as: Breathe. Here. Notice. Accept. Connect. Compassion. Smell. Present. See. Share. Still. Focus. Together. Belonging. Patience. Exhale. 
  • Write each word on its own slip of paper and then put them all into a small box or jar.
  • Select one word from your box each day to use as a cue to reconnect to yourself, to others, or to the sounds, sights, and sensations around you. 
  • Revisit your word of the day at least three times throughout the day and take 30 seconds or more to ponder the word in your current context. Stick with one word for a day or a week before choosing another.  

1 Comment

  1. William Robinson

    Great ideas…thanks

    Reply

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The Stuck at Home (together) initiative is partially funded through the generous support of:

The mission of the Foundation for Art & Healing is to promote creative arts expression as a means to improve health and well-being for individuals and communities. Our signature program, The UnLonely Project, broadens public awareness of the negative physical and mental health consequences of loneliness associated with a wide range of living conditions and circumstances while also exploring and promoting creative arts-based approaches to reduce the burden. 

The content on this site is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical or mental health condition.