Hey amigos, I hope you are enjoying a very mindful week and using those new zen superpowers! If you are just catching on to mindfulness march, check out the first two posts here and here 😉 Hopefully we are all becoming more aware of the activity in our minds on a daily basis, and practicing the art of single tasking! Awesome!
Practicing mindfulness has numerous positive flow-on effects (see the Keystone Habit for more on this), one of these being the magic of slowing time down!! Wait…What!?
Slow Time Down (Literally)
One of the more incredible and useful aspects of practicing mindfulness, is the ability to achieve more in less time. How does that work? Recent research reveals that practicing mindfulness has the power to alter an individuals perception of time. Mindful individuals are more likely to complete tasks in a shorter amount of time in comparison to the time they perceived it to take. This means that being mindful creates the experience and perception of being engaged in a task for longer than the actual time it takes, creating more space and achieving higher productivity! How cool!!
In my personal experience, I have had numerous days where I achieved way more than I would have expected, simply through practicing single tasking and being mindful. It is close to what Daniel Levitin explains as a flow state. However in a flow state (an intense present moment experience), time disappears altogether and a sort of hyper focus takes over. Practicing mindfulness creates a mild version of a flow state, where time simply slows down instead of disappearing, and the mind is much more focused on the task at hand.
Another key reason that mindfulness can alter our perception of time, is that it drastically reduces stress and anxiety. Stress and anxiety take a huge toll on our attentional resources and our ability to estimate time correctly. The key message here is two fold, practicing mindfulness reduces stress and anxiety (which contribute to poor time judgment) and creates the experience of having more time than we actually do! Amazing!!
Meditation is inextricably linked to increasing your ability to practice mindfulness . I am going to cover meditation in the next couple of months, so make sure you stay tuned!! 🙂
Call to Action
Keep practicing mindfulness this week and notice yourself having more time and getting more done (not to mention reducing your stress and anxiety)! Yes!
They key concepts used in this article where referenced from:
Droit-Volet, S., & Dambrun, M. (2015). Mindfulness meditation and relaxation training increases time sensitivity. Consciousness and Cognition, 31, 86-97.
Levitin, Daniel. (2014). The Organised Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload.