CAN WE BE MINDFUL AND PRODUCTIVE AT THE SAME TIME?
If I can describe Rural Mindfulness in the simplest possible way, I would call it FOCUS. Have you ever found FOCUS difficult? Have you been distracted by a phone call or someone else’s problems when you had your own intention for the day? This can be very frustrating, especially during the busy business periods.
On the other hand are there times when you are with the family and you just can’t stop thinking about an issue from work. This can be a common issue for farmers as we often live in the workplace and what is calling for our attention is literally just over the fence. The most difficult challenge can be bedtime when the lights go out and our thoughts seem to amplify. Getting to sleep can be near impossible.
Rural Mindfulness settles the mind into the present moment. This important skill puts what matters most at the top of our priority list. I explain in my workshops that we can have part of our awareness in the present moment most of the time. We do this simply by noticing our physical body, our breath, the sounds, sights, aromas, textures, temperatures and flavours available in that moment. You can try in now if you want to. Just look up and take a breath, try to look at the detail in your environment as if for the first time. Now check in on your body and have a quick stretch – this is mindfulness.
When we don’t put any attention on the present moment our sympathetic nervous system can be overactive because the body may feel like it’s under threat, even if you’re running late for work. Think of one of those cars that burn up the fuel. It may look fabulous, it may be fast but it needs refuelling every few hours and it is costing a fortune. That is our body when in overdrive.
When part of our awareness is in the present moment we become more relaxed, happier, calmer and probably friendlier! Energy levels heighten and over time our health improves because digestion is easier, the heart rate is steadier and the immune system can function efficiently. We become a very fuel-efficient car and this means a happier workplace, happier families and a happier, healthier body.
Personally I believe we need to keep a perspective on the personal price we are paying for the workload we manage. For the long-term health of our bodies and our personal relationships we need to find a way to create quality time.
Mindfulness is a gift you give yourself, your family and your workplace. Let’s approach harvest mindfully this year by grabbing those precious moments. It only takes a few minutes to have a hug, to say thank you, to call a friend, to watch the sunset. Let me know how you live mindfully this harvest and the benefits you notice. How are you going to refuel? Let the present moment be your greatest distraction and your healthiest habit.
By Narelle Hunter
To get in touch with Nacelle or for more information about Mindfulness click here to head to her Rural Mindfulness page :)