Mindfulness is one of those words that seems to be everywhere at the moment – and, as a mindfulness coach, I don’t mind that one bit! But what is mindfulness? And, even more crucially, how can mindfulness specifically help brides and nearlyweds?
What is mindfulness?
Mindfulness is, put simply, the practice of focusing your awareness on the present, and is used as a therapeutic technique to help deal with anxiety and overwhelm. Instead of obsessing over your thoughts and feeling totally overcome by them; or, alternatively, pushing your feelings down and not acknowledging them at all, mindfulness helps you calmly identify and accept your feelings, thoughts and bodily sensations. I like to think of it as self-care for the mind – and that’s for every mind too, as (just like my celebrancy) it’s not bound to any specific religion or spiritual practice.
The great thing about mindfulness is its versatility. It doesn’t require any external equipment, meaning you can deploy some mindfulness techniques wherever you’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed. Another misconception is that mindfulness requires a lot of time but, whilst carving out dedicated time for yourself is always a winner, you don’t have to set aside a big chunk of your day for it. In fact, you can clear your mind and focus on the present in as little as 60 seconds if you know how to shift your focus (which is where a mindfulness teacher can help!). This means you can use mindfulness whenever, too (maybe that’s what Shakira was singing about…)
And the great thing is these 60 seconds quickly add up, as it’s cumulative. Five minutes of mindfulness a day counts just as much as a big 30 minute blowout once a week – in fact, little and often consistently can sometimes make the biggest difference!
How does mindfulness for brides work?
This can be especially true on your wedding day, which is why I work on mindfulness for brides particularly. As a momentous occasion that probably took a lot of planning, the anticipation of the day can be equal parts exciting and equal parts terrifying, stressful, overwhelming, anxiety-inducing. Sometimes it can be just those things, without much excitement. You can spend most of, if not the whole day fretting and distracted, when actually you want to be present and able to enjoy a pretty pivotal moment in your life. But when there’s a lot going on, you might not feel able to take yourself off for a breather or some space, so being able to spend just 60 seconds unlocking a really powerful tool can be a total gamechanger.
So, how does mindfulness for brides work? Essentially, it works by forming a habit; building up your ability over time to use the techniques, just like strengthening a muscle. In the months or weeks before the day itself, you can learn what mindfulness is and how to do it, so that come your wedding day, you can use it with ease to fully enjoy the day. Brilliant, huh? Think of it as building a toolkit of techniques for your mind that when the time comes you can raid the toolbox and find the right tool for the job to help you reconnect with the moment and bring you back to the now.
In my work as a celebrant, I see far too many nearlyweds – but women in particular – suffering from anxiety and overwhelm during their wedding planning, so I specialise in mindfulness for brides coaching too, where I can work with you in the run up to your wedding day to establish this habit to leave you blissful and chilled when the day comes. If that sounds like something you’d like to know more about, or to find out when I’m launching my next programme please feel free to get in touch here.