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7 Things You Can Do Today to Incorporate Mindfulness into Your Routine

Every day presents countless opportunities to engage more deeply with the world around us — yet, amidst our busy schedules, these moments often slip by unnoticed. In this article, I will guide you through seven pivotal moments of your daily routine, where practising mindfulness can significantly enhance your productivity, elevate your success, and profoundly enrich your quality of life. Additionally, I will share a bonus tip that might just be the key to unlocking even greater joy and fulfilment.

But before we get going I would like to align our definition of mindfulness. If you want to know more about the very concept of mindfulness you can visit our mindfulness homepage

In the DeRose Method we view mindfulness as the process of being fully present in the now. This means that you are experiencing fully the moment and your mind is concentrated on what you are experiencing. This combination of experience and concentration is key to the process and will allow you to be more productive, to enjoy more life and to effectively improve your quality of life. 

To better grasp how these mindful moments can transform your day, your routine, we explore common daily activities — from the moment you open your eyes to when you close them at night. Whether you are navigating a workday or enjoying a day off, these practices are universal. 

1. Mindful Morning Routine: Starting Your Day Right

Waking up is undoubtedly a daily ritual for every person. For many people it goes something like this: smack the alarm, struggle to get out of bed, get a coffee to try to wake up, have a shower, to try to wake up, and try not to be late for the rest of the activities of the day. Or, your day may start differently, you may have the best of mornings, waking up before your alarm, and enjoy all moments before you leave home. 

Regardless of your personal process of waking up, one thing is for sure: it is when we are first greeting a new day that we are at our most automatic behaviour and therefore the moment which we are least aware of, the least mindful. 

There are clear benefits to experiencing the process of waking fully. 

  • A reconnection between your mind and body
  • The memories of your dreams which can help shed light onto your subconscious
  • The appreciation of a new day in your life
  • The tone and mood which you want to have for the day. 

How can you wake up with mindfulness?

I have two favourite ways of applying mindfulness as I wake up. The first starts with not having to get out of bed immediately, so I set my alarm to 15 to 30 min before I actually need to wake up and I allow myself to snooze the alarm. This allows me to enjoy that final bit of sleep and appreciate the moment of rest. 

The second is a brief text I have on my phone’s calendar everyday and I read it daily. The original author of this text is Prof. DeRose and he recommends that this text should be read daily upon waking up. I like to read this just as I pick up my phone. The text reads: 

“I receive this new day in my life with the disposition to be a better and happier person. I want to re-educate myself gradually so that I can better serve the people that I relate with today. I am going to learn more things, I am going to accomplish something good, I am going to enjoy the simple and beautiful things in life, such as the breeze, a ray of sunshine, the song of a bird, a flower. Today I want to be more tolerant than I was yesterday and tomorrow more than today. I want to share good things and good thoughts.” 

Once I have completed these two processes I sit down on my bed, cross my legs and close my eyes for one brief moment and I concentrate. After this moment I can write down my dreams or get up and get my son’s breakfast (and often his school lunch too) ready. I no longer need to wake him up, but I always give him a hug and tell him that I love him before I start to take care of the kitchen activities. 

2. Planning Your Day with Mindfulness

The next very important moment starts when my son leaves for school, or when I can turn my focus to myself. I am sure all of us have had the feeling that the day is starting and suddenly it is lunch time. The day seems to get away from you and before you know it, it is over and you feel like you have not done enough. Even worse, you may get to the end of the day and not have any measure of success for your day. 

At this point I feel it is very important to take a pause and be mindful of how we set up the day. 

How can you set up with mindfulness?

While some systems can add a lot of complexity to this process, I am a fan of keeping things simple. I suggest that you do a short mindfulness exercise so that you can clear your mind (which should be relatively easy as little has happened in your day to distract you). I will describe the exercise here and I will also record an audio of the exercise so you do not need to read it for yourself. 

Daily Planning: Take a moment, a couple of minutes to just breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly trying to use as much of your lung’s capacity as possible. Become completely aware of your breathing. Once your mind is focused, I would like you to imagine the result of your day. Imagine yourself with rich details, imagine you are feeling accomplished and that your day has been productive and fruitful. Imagine that you were able to do all the tasks you wanted, even the least pleasant ones, easily and without hurdles. Imagine yourself smiling and feeling satisfied. Now return from the technique. 

Once you return, I would like you to take a piece of paper (or your phone) and write down 3 things you want to accomplish today. Three tasks. Three things which are the most important not to get left behind. Next write two more which are important but not vital. Refer back to this list through your day so you can make sure you have accomplished everything in it! 

If you want to dive deeper into mindfulness you can access here the Ultimate Guide to Mindfulness for Beginners

3. Connecting and Communicating

Once we have set out the objectives and priorities for your day it is time to get things done. A commonality between the largest majority of tasks is that you are going to be connecting and communicating with other people. However, this is where we need to pay close attention, for the majority of our communication, and the majority of the time we connect with people we are used to working with, is done automatically and this can significantly reduce its effectiveness. 

Let me paint a scene for you: I would like you to imagine that you just woke up and noticed you were late for work and then ran out of the house still eating the last of your breakfast on your commute to work. Once you arrived at your workplace, you barely had time to say hello to your colleagues, you had no time to even get a cup of coffee or tea as you had to login to your first online meeting of the day. On the other side of the screen is  another person who has had a similar morning experience as you did. In my imaginary scene, the two people jump straight into checking the status of the tasks each one had to deliver. As you deliver your update you notice that the other person seems distracted and by the end of the meeting you are feeling frustrated and resigned to accepting that this is just a normal day at work.

When you are mindful with your connection and communication what would change?

Let us paint a new scene: you wake up more slowly and you read the message above, energising you for your day. You then create a plan for your day and as you leave home you are still finishing your breakfast during your commute. As you arrive at your workplace you take a very quick moment to greet your co-workers and share good thoughts with them (just as we outlined in the text above). You are still in a rush to get into your meeting, but upon seeing your rush one of your colleagues, who was making themselves some tea, takes a moment to bring you a nice cup of tea too. On the other side of your online meeting is the same person who has had a hectic start. However, before you start to check the status of the last week, you take a brief moment to connect. For example, you say something along the lines of: “I know that morning meetings are always tough. How are you doing today? Before we start, is there something that I can help?” Your words seem to impact your colleague who takes a deep breath and shares: “actually, my son is not well today and I am a bit worried if he is going to be sick.” This exchange allows you to empathise with your colleague and you say something like: “oh! I am sorry, let me just tell you about these 2 important things and we can meet again later, go take care of your son now.”

When you apply the state of mindfulness into connecting and communicating the scenario above is much more likely. All you need to do is to be present in the moment and you will be able to have similar experiences to the one I outlined above. Even better, if you follow the steps in this article this will be your new reality.

4. Mindful Eating: Engaging Your Senses

Now that we understand better how adding mindfulness at different moments of our lives can begin to create such an amazing impact, we can explore other moments that tend to be executed in an automated fashion and which offer an opportunity for you to experience something completely new and awesome if you are really present. 

A prime example of this is the moments you spend eating. Most people tend to barely notice what they eat. Worse, often it is an activity to get out of the way rather than a gift of pleasure and nutrition to your own organism. When your attention, focus and concentration is on your phone, on TV, on anything other than the task you are doing – eating – you are missing out. 

So here is a quick exercise you can do to experience eating with your senses, to effectively apply mindfulness to eating. 

grilled cheese and tomato soup

A simple exercise is to pay attention whilst eating. Whether it is a meal or a snack, the important thing is to be ‘here and now’ whilst you chew and savour each portion.

In order to enter the state of mindfulness we are going to use our senses. Start by looking and effectively seeing your food, its colours, its shapes, its presentation. Smell its fragrances and spices. Only then, taste it.

In Hindu culture it is said that we should savour food with all five senses: we should look at it, listen to it, smell it, touch it (in India, it is good manners to eat with your hands), before finally tasting it.

Remove distractions: do not watch television, read, or work while eating. Later you will be able to experience this even if distractions are nearby, but especially in the beginning, before you are trained, avoid all distractions for the entirety of your meal.

By doing this, you are likely to feel satisfied earlier, with lower quantities of food.

5. Effective Mindfulness Breaks: How to Recharge

Another low-hanging fruit where we can immediately experience the benefits of mindfulness is during our breaks. Often overlooked, breaks are crucial not only for mental refreshment but also for sustaining concentration and productivity throughout the day. 

A break is an opportunity for your mind to shift gears and go from a state of high energy expenditure to rest. Imagine that your mind is like a muscle and after using this muscle a lot it is craving distractions and rest. 

The difference between an effective break and a not effective one goes back to your ability to be aware of what you are doing, of the moment you are experiencing. A long break can be useless if you are just sliding into automatic mode, while even the shortests of breaks, a single breath, can be reinvigorating if you are focused on the moment. Therefore, applying the concept of mindfulness during a break is vital. If you are successful you will experience: 

  • Enhanced Productivity: Refreshed mentally and emotionally, you are more likely to tackle subsequent tasks with increased vigour and clarity.
  • Improved Creativity: By stepping back and allowing your mind to wander in a controlled way, you open up new avenues for creative thought.
  • Reduced Stress Levels: breaks can allow you to change your perspective and reassess the pressures you feel, thus significantly lowering stress levels and contributing to better overall health.

How can you incorporate mindfulness into your breaks?

Actually, this is a relatively simple task! You can make use of a mindfulness exercise to become your break and by experiencing this fully you will be ready to tackle any task ahead of you. 

I recommend an exercise which is very similar to the exercise you did for your morning daily planning. By repeating the process and exercise you are training yourself, improving your skills and allowing you to achieve the results quicker. 

Mindfulness break: Take a moment, a couple of minutes to just breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly trying to use as much of your lung’s capacity as possible. Become completely aware of your breathing. Stay focused on the task, avoid getting distracted, avoid thinking about something else. After a few minutes conclude the exercise, you have successfully taken a break from everything. Observe how you feel. You are now ready to get back to your tasks.

6. Reflecting on Your Day: Mindfulness to Measure Success

One of the most important aspects of perceiving success is to actually measure it. While this may seem simple, the actual number of people who do this is very small. One of the keys to achieving success and to feeling the satisfaction of your accomplishments starts with actually deciding what you should be measured to achieve the success. When a person lacks clear metrics to gauge their success, the result is the feeling of being lost.  Without tangible benchmarks or specific goals, it becomes exceedingly difficult to assess progress or celebrate achievements. This lack of clarity can lead to feelings of frustration and confusion, as efforts seem directionless and outcomes become unpredictable. 

Over time, this situation may erode motivation, as the inability to see and measure growth makes it hard to maintain enthusiasm and commitment. This is where our earlier tip comes back to give us a boost: your morning planning. As we established well-defined metrics we can easily track progress, bolsters confidence and satisfaction by providing concrete evidence of our accomplishments.

How to apply this in your life?

Set aside a time before you are ready to go to bed. Use this moment to enter the state of mindfulness as described above. You can use the same exercise you did earlier when taking a mindfulness break. Once that is complete, bring up your morning list and determine what you did from your list and what you missed. 

For the tasks you completed, look back through your day and check if you could have been more aggressive with your expectations of yourself or if the challenge level was correct. For example, I have a target to write 2000 words per day. I reached this number because my first target was 100 words and I kept on increasing the number until I started to fail. This allowed me to set a realistic target.

For the tasks you have failed it is important to understand the ‘why’. Were you too ambitious? Was the target not important? Were there any other reasons? Write this down next to the task and over time you will start to learn more about yourself too. These notes will be really useful the next morning when you set new tasks. 

Finally, look at what else you did during your day and determine if you had tasks done which you originally missed from your list but which were important and add these to your review. 

The following day, when you are setting your tasks for the day, use the previous day’s notes to help you to refine, improve and fine tune your list and, most importantly, to know more about yourself. 

7. Preparing for Sleep: Techniques for a Restful Night

Alright, we have looked at how you can be more mindful when:

  • You wake up, 
  • When you create your daily tasks, 
  • When you connect and communicate,
  • When you eat,
  • When you take breaks
  • When you reflect on your day. 

Our final moment of the day can often be a tricky one. In our modern societies, more and more people are having trouble sleeping. If you do some quick research you can see many official articles describing the issues with sleep such as this one which claims that 1 in 4 young adults have trouble sleeping in the Netherlands

This is clearly an issue that most people have.

How to apply mindfulness to the sleep moment?

One of the main reported issues which prevent good sleep is when people say that their minds are too busy. While mindfulness is a key technique to solve exactly this issue, the other steps you have seen in this article are also key to help to address a restful night’s sleep. For example, when you can review your day, your brain unloads that information and part of the preoccupations are gone, providing better conditions for resting. 

With fewer distractions you are now ready to learn another technique of the DeRose Method. This is called Assimilation Technique and its objective is to relax your body, to stimulate your mind and allow you to create mental templates for your objectives. When you combine an Assimilation Technique with your mindful state, the results are tremendous. 

You can access here a recording I made especially so that you can experience this technique and feel for yourself the results of the DeRose Method. 

8. Bonus: Training with the DeRose Method

The DeRose Method is a system that teaches its students how to improve their performance at work and life, how to know yourself better, how to have the energy and vitality to achieve your dreams, and how to have a better quality of life. We achieve these incredible objectives by teaching the students techniques and concepts. The techniques are physical; you train them in a class so that you can improve your focus, strength, flexibility, your breathing, your self. The concepts are suggestions on how we can better understand the world around us, the way we manage the relationship with ourselves and others.

Within our techniques we teach meditation, mindfulness and even physical positions and breathing. A complete technical class of the DeRose Method will offer 8 families of techniques and lasts about one hour and trains you so that you can earn and own the techniques so that you can apply them in your life, whenever you desire. 

If your objective is really to include mindfulness in your life, then the best way to do it is to go bolder and bigger, to actually become a member of DeRose Amsterdam and to incorporate our concepts and techniques within your life. 

You can sign up for a trial simply by clicking on the button below:

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Fabs Martins

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