8 mindfulness habits that calm people always practice

There’s a clear difference between simply existing and truly living, and it often comes down to mindfulness.

Mindfulness is a way of focusing on the present moment, with a calm acceptance of feelings, thoughts, and sensations.

As someone who has personally practiced and benefited from mindfulness, I can vouch for its transformative impact.

And believe me when I say this: Calm individuals – like me – always incorporate certain mindfulness habits into their lives.

Here are 8 mindfulness habits that calm people – including yours truly – always practice.

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder of Hack Spirit and a passionate advocate for mindfulness and Buddhism. And I’m here to share these insights with you.

Let’s delve in.

1) Mindful breathing

Breathing is a fundamental part of our lives, yet many of us take it for granted.

However, those of us who are calm and collected understand the immense power of mindful breathing.

Mindful breathing involves focusing on your breath, observing each inhalation and exhalation without trying to alter your breathing rhythm. It’s about being present with the experience of being alive, right here and right now.

This simple exercise acts as an anchor, grounding us in the present moment. It keeps us from getting swept up in our thoughts and brings clarity to our mind.

As a mindfulness practitioner, I can assure you that this habit is a game-changer. Each breath we take can serve as a reminder to return to the present moment and embrace it fully.

So next time you feel overwhelmed or tense, remember: Just breathe. Mindfully. It’s a habit we calm individuals swear by.

Mindfulness isn’t about doing things perfectly or achieving some ideal state. It’s about continuously coming back to the present moment and appreciating it for what it is. And mindful breathing is an excellent way to start.

2) Embracing impermanence

Change is the only constant in life. That’s a fact. But calm people like me don’t just acknowledge this; we embrace it.

Embracing impermanence is about accepting that everything – good or bad – is temporary. It brings a certain lightness to our lives, knowing that every moment is fleeting and unique.

In Buddhist teachings, this is referred to as “anicca”. It underlines the belief that all conditioned phenomena are transient and constantly changing.

Thich Nhat Hanh, renowned mindfulness master and Buddhist monk, puts it beautifully: “Thanks to impermanence, everything is possible.”

That quote has always resonated with me. It reminds us to appreciate the present and not get too attached to any particular outcome. It’s about living in the ‘now’, because the ‘now’ is all we truly have.

When you’re caught up in worry about the future or regret over the past, remember: Life is impermanent, and every moment is a fresh start. Embrace it.

3) Practicing non-judgment

In the hustle and bustle of life, it’s easy to become a critic. We judge ourselves, others, and situations around us. It’s a habit most of us are guilty of.

But here’s some raw honesty for you: Judgment only breeds negativity and tension.

Calm people practice the art of non-judgment – a core principle in Buddhism. This means observing thoughts, feelings, and experiences without labeling them as ‘good,’ ‘bad,’ or anything in between.

It’s about allowing things to be as they are, not as we wish them to be.

In Buddhist wisdom, judgment is seen as a form of ignorance. It blinds us from seeing the true nature of things and can lead us to suffering.

How about we stop being so hard on ourselves and others? Let’s learn to observe without judgment. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it. After all, clarity and peace lie in acceptance, not judgment.

4) Mindful listening

In a world where everyone is eager to express their opinion, it’s rare to find someone who truly listens. But let me be raw and honest here: Mindful listening is a powerful tool for cultivating calmness.

Mindful listening is about being fully present and attentive while someone else is speaking. It’s not about waiting for your turn to speak or formulating a response in your head. It’s about truly hearing and understanding the other person.

This mindfulness practice fosters empathy, patience, and understanding. It allows us to connect with others on a deeper level and also helps us to quiet our own internal chatter.

When you engage in a conversation, try to really listen. Absorb the words, understand the emotions behind them, and respond with compassion. Such mindful interactions can be incredibly calming and fulfilling.

5) Cultivating compassion

Compassion is a critical part of mindfulness and something I’ve dedicated a significant part of my life to understanding and promoting.

As someone who has researched and practiced Buddhism and mindfulness extensively, I’ve come to realize that compassion isn’t just about feeling sympathy for others. It’s about truly understanding their experiences and wanting to alleviate their suffering.

In fact, cultivating compassion is so integral to mindfulness that I’ve dedicated an entire section to it in my book, Hidden Secrets of Buddhism: How To Live With Maximum Impact and Minimum Ego.

It’s not always easy to respond with compassion, especially when we’re faced with negativity or hostility.

But trust me, it’s a habit worth cultivating. Not only does it benefit those around us, but it also fosters a sense of inner peace and calm within ourselves.

6) Mindful eating

Let’s get real here: Many of us eat on autopilot. We eat in front of our screens, during meetings, or on the go. We’re physically feeding our bodies, but our minds are elsewhere.

Mindful eating is about bringing full attention to the process of eating – to all the tastes, smells, thoughts, and feelings that arise during a meal. It’s about appreciating the food and acknowledging the effort that went into its preparation.

This practice, deeply rooted in Buddhist teachings, is a form of meditation in action. It encourages us to slow down, savor every bite, and cultivate gratitude for the nourishment we receive.

And here’s the honest truth: Mindful eating can transform our relationship with food. It promotes healthier eating habits, reduces overeating, and leads to a better appreciation of our meals.

When you sit down for a meal, try it. Turn off the distractions and truly experience your food. It’s an enlightening experience, I promise.

7) Daily meditation

Let’s cut to the chase: Meditation isn’t just for monks and yoga enthusiasts. It’s a practical tool that can cultivate calmness, clarity, and emotional positivity.

Daily meditation involves setting aside specific time each day to quiet your mind and focus on the present. It’s not about emptying the mind but about becoming an observer of your thoughts without judgement.

Jon Kabat-Zinn, a renowned mindfulness teacher, once said: “Meditation is the only intentional, systematic human activity which at bottom is about not trying to improve yourself or get anywhere else, but simply to realize where you already are.”

That quote hits the nail on the head. Meditation isn’t about chasing some elusive state of bliss. It’s about coming to terms with who you are right now, in this moment.

It’s raw, it’s honest, and it can be life-changing.

If you haven’t already, give daily meditation a try. It truly is one of the most effective habits for maintaining inner calm.

8) Doing nothing

It sounds counterintuitive, doesn’t it? In a world that glorifies busyness and productivity, doing nothing seems almost rebellious.

But here’s the thing: Mindfulness isn’t about constantly doing; it’s about being. And sometimes, that means doing absolutely nothing at all.

This practice, often referred to as “non-doing,” is about consciously choosing to be still, to not engage in any activity, and to simply be present with whatever arises.

It’s not as easy as it sounds. Our minds are used to being occupied, and they can resist the unfamiliar state of inactivity. But with practice, you can learn to embrace the silence and tranquility that comes with doing nothing.

When you find yourself reaching for your phone or looking for a distraction, try this instead: Do nothing. Just sit quietly and observe your thoughts and feelings without judgement. It might just be the most productive thing you do all day.

In conclusion, mindfulness is more than a practice—it’s a way of life. It’s about truly experiencing each moment, embracing life as it unfolds, and finding calm amidst the chaos.

These 8 habits are simple, yet profound. They promote inner peace and help us navigate life with greater ease and clarity.

And remember, no one is expecting you to master all these habits overnight. Mindfulness is a journey, not a destination.

For those of you interested in delving deeper into mindfulness and Buddhism, I invite you to check out my book, Hidden Secrets of Buddhism: How To Live With Maximum Impact and Minimum Ego. It’s packed with insights and practical tips to help you live a more mindful and meaningful life.

Remember, each moment is a fresh start. Embrace it, live it, enjoy it. Here’s to your journey towards calmness and mindfulness!

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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. Check out my latest book on the Hidden Secrets of Buddhism and How it Saved My Life. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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