14159139_10153915280906309_1167928723_nEveryday gives us an opportunity for renewal and being in the present moment.

I remember loving the story of the woodcutter in “The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People” by Stephen Covey. The woodcutter is busy over several days and gets less and less productive. He is not cultivating the  7th habit called “Sharpen the Saw” which is the foundation for the other 6 habits.

The busier we are, the more important it becomes to slow down. It is estimated that 95% of our behaviour runs on autopilot. To come from a place of intention when we are making decisions requires the mindfulness of our slow brain. It takes practice and gets stronger the more we use it. Newly sprouted neurons are activated in our grey matter by slowing down.

Setting up external triggers helps us slow down mentally. This is not about doing nothing. Instead it is mindfully choosing an activity that recharges you.

There is only one moment in time when it is essential to awaken. That moment is now. Buddha 

Here are 3 easy practices to help you slow down and  reconnect with yourself in the present moment. Let me know how they work for you.

1. Healing Cup of Tea

This has to be one of my favourite daily practices. Tea time is an ancient ritual in eastern cultures for slowing down to the pleasures of life. Central to tea ceremonies are harmony, respect and tranquility. Savor drinking your tea and allow yourself to retreat from the world and feel at peace.

2. Take a Walk in Nature

This is why I love summer. Taking a walk in nature feels wonderful. Now Japanese research is showing that taking a 20-minute leisurely stroll everyday can reduce the stress hormone cortisol by 40 % for 5 hours allowing estrogen, progesterone and other hormones to come back into balance.

3. Burn Incense

I grew up seeing the power of this practice. For thousands of years frankincense has been used by the ancient world for its healing and spiritual properties. The resin is burned in a resin burner and creates a sacred atmosphere that enhances meditation, deepens awareness and calm. You can find incense online or at oriental stores.

Forever is composed of nows. – Emily Dickinson