I just wanted to share a very easy and simple mindfulness technique that you can try almost anywhere you are. It only takes a brief few minutes to complete. This exercise can help ground you and bring you back to the here and now during times of high anxiety or stress. I learned this technique during one of my stays at a partial hospitalization program for mental health and wellness. It really can help!
- Lotion or hand sanitizer
Step 1: Apply Lotion
Apply a quarter sized amount of lotion or hand sanitizer to the palm of your hand but don’t rub it in.
Step 2: Touch
Think about the way the lotion feels in your hand. Focus on your sense of touch to feel the texture of the lotion. How does it feel in your hand? Is it slimy, silky, smooth, bumpy? Does it remind you of anything?
Step 3: Sight
Next, focus on your sense of sight. What does the lotion look like in your hand? What color does it look like? Does the lotion form a design or shape in your hand? Does it remind you of anything? How does it look to you?
Step 4: Smell
Focus on your sense of smell. What does the lotion smell like? Is it a pleasant scent? Does it smell floral or fruity? What does it remind you of or make you think about?
Step 5: Hearing
Next, using your sense of hearing, does the lotion make any noise when you squish it around your hand? Does that noise sound like something familiar or remind you of anything?
Step 6: Taste
Last but not least, use your sense of taste. Don’t actually taste the lotion, please. But if you could taste it, what do you think it would taste like? Would it remind you of something you’ve tasted in the past? Do you think it would taste like chemicals, be bitter or sour? Do you think it would taste good or bad?
This mindfulness technique makes you focus on your five senses to help bring back to the moment and to help ground you. You can try this exercise using other products as well. You don’t have to just stick to using only lotion. I hope you are able to find this mindfulness technique as helpful as I have!
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Samantha is the author of "My Bipolar Mind: You're not alone," she is also a freelance writer, blogger, and mental health advocate who runs and manages her own mental health blog MyBipolarMind.com.