I'm always looking for new ways to make my life more fulfilling. Any time I run across an idea or practice that may have the potential to bring more happiness into my life, I get excited. I've run into mindfulness and minimalism, recently, both practices that I think sound appealing, and through daily practice of them I'm fairly certain they could make my life more satisfying.
Mindfulness is a meditation practice which derives from the Buddhist religion. It is a meditation that can be incorporated seamlessly into daily life and activities, meaning it doesn't take extra time out of your day. The meditation encourages you to focus on your breathing and your presence in your surroundings so that you can be more present in the current moment instead of being worried or concerned with anything in the future or the past. If you dedicate all of your attention to what you are only doing in the present, you have no choice other than to not allow yourself to be stressed or anxious. Such a practice has the ability to introduce a sense of contentment and awareness into your life, making you enjoy the place you are at.
Minimalism is a concept tied to the idea that "less is more." Living a life of minimalism is meant to un-complicate life and help you to realize that you don't need as many material things to be happy as you think, and that you don't need to overthink or over-analyze everything you do to be successful or attain your goals.
This Confucius quote pinpoints the main idea of minimalism.
"Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated."
Even though mindfulness and minimalism are different ideas and different practices, I believe that together the two can be used to create a more rewarding and happier lifestyle.
As inspired by readings, I try to incorporate mindfulness into my life by focusing on my breathing when I feel myself getting distracted from a conversation, and also by disconnecting with my phone. I think in the present digital age, disconnecting with your phone is important to practice because it's the most popular way to take yourself out of the present moment. Becoming successful at mindfulness can lead to a happiness that is about enjoying where you're at because you aren't stressing about other events or worrying about what other people are thinking or doing because you are focused on yourself in the current moment.
Minimalism ties into this idea of not thinking about anything other than the present because it is about making life simpler. It's about a combination of reducing the material things around you as well as trying to ignore the complications of life.
Using both mindfulness and minimalism together, you can find yourself in a place of enjoyment, no longer worried about the unnecessary distractions of daily life.