Mindfulness for UWA Honours and Masters Students


No matter how busy you are, everyone can benefit
for taking 5 to 10 minutes every day to relax, refocus and recharge.
You can do this simple body scan meditation either sitting or lying down at home or a
quiet, peaceful place on campus. In one of our libraries or gardens or even sitting by
the river. There’s no aim here other than to focus on the present moment, put aside
any worries or feelings that you should be doing something else.
By allowing yourself time to do this mindfulness exercise and with regular practice, hopefully
you’ll see the benefits and return to your research and study with renewed focus and
energy. Take a few minutes to get comfortable. Close
your eyes or lower your gaze and feel the points where your body is making contact with
the floor or the ground beneath you. Notice the movement of your breath as you breathe
in and out. Put aside any worries for the moment. There’s nowhere you have to be, no
one you have to please, nothing you should be doing other than this. All of it can wait
until after this short meditation. Take a few deep breaths, focus on emptying your lungs
completely. Notice how the refill themselves without you thinking about it. Now allow your
breathing to return to a relaxed and steady pace. Notice the natural rhythm of the rise
and fall of your ribcage as the air flows in and out. Now bring your attention to your
feet, notice anything you feel. Bringing your attention up to your legs. Bring your attention
to your pelvis, your hips and your lower back. If you feel any discomfort while you’re doing
this meditation move gently into a more comfortable position and then settle back into a state
of relaxed attention. Notice how your back feels, your neck and the position of your
head. Bring your attention to your arms by your side, your hands and finally your fingers.
While you’re doing this if you become distracted by thoughts or feelings don’t worry, it doesn’t
matter how many times your mind wanders, it’s only natural. Every time this happens simply
notice what’s drawing your attention away and then come back to an awareness of your
body in the present moment. Now bringing your awareness to the top of your head and your
scalp. Notice in the back of your head, your forehead, eyebrows, the space between your
eyebrows, eyes, nose, cheeks, ears, lips and jaw. Feel your whole face. Bringing your attention
again to your neck, are you feeling any distension or discomfort here? If you are simply allow
yourself to be aware of it in a relaxed, gentle, open and curious way. Feel your shoulders,
if you notice any tension simply observe it. Do the sensations change when you just allow
them to be, or are you struggling to relax? If you are, just let that intention go. Feeling
your upper back, your lower back. Now take a few moment to slowly scan from the top of
your body right down to the feet. Observe all of the sensations you feel without judgement
so you’re studying your own body from a distance. Become aware of your body as a whole, have
your breath flowing easily in and out. While you are doing this, again, if you become distracted
by thoughts or feelings don’t worry just bring your attention back to your body. When you’re
ready slowly bringing your awareness back to the room or the space that surrounds you.
Listen closely to all the sounds you can hear. Wiggle your fingers and toes a little. Stretch
your arms and legs if that feels good to you. Stay here for as long as you like and when
you’re ready, in your own time, slowly open your eyes and get ready to return to your
day. Hopefully feeling renewed, refreshed and recharged.

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