When it comes to gift-giving, Father’s Day can be a real head-scratcher. Another work tie? Boring. One of those “Best Dad Ever” novelty mugs? That’s a definite no. Maybe your kids painted you something at school? OK, that last one sounds pretty adorable.
While every Dad likes to be celebrated, wouldn’t it be refreshing to give yourself a gift — one that actually makes you a better father? Best of all, it’s absolutely free! It’s called mindfulness, and it’s being used by everyone from CEOs to professional athletes to de-stress and build better focus.
First, let’s identify the signs of stress:
- An increase in heart rate and blood pressure
- Muscle tension
- Poor concentration
- Sleep problems
If you’ve been dealing with some of these symptoms for a while, you are a great candidate for mindfulness exercises. It’s basically another term for deep breathing exercises that can have a positive effect on your stress level. Here’s the 101 on mindfulness:
- Find a quiet place, place one hand on your stomach just above your navel, and place the other hand on your chest.
- Breathe slowly in through your nose, hold your breath for a few seconds, and breathe slowly out through your nose.
- Repeat this breathing exercise for several minutes, while focusing your mind solely on your breathing. If your mind wanders, remind yourself to go back to the breathing.
Try this exercise for a couple of weeks and see if your family or coworkers notice a change.