There are a number of mindfulness exercises that can help relieve stress. Mindfulness is about paying attention, living in the now, and watching your thoughts arise and disappear - without judging them. Each of these forms of mindfulness can be useful for lowering stress and relaxing for a few minutes each day. Here are several suggestions that can be used throughout the day. 

1. Breathing Meditation

Focus on your breath and try to empty your mind of any thoughts. Breathe in and out, long and deeply. This helps calm you and can also boost your energy due to the increase oxygen flowing through your bloodstream from the deeper breaths, compared with the short gasps we tend to take when we are stressed or upset. 

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Take a breather with a five-minute breathing meditation break each day, or any time things start to get stressful at home or work.

2. Body Scan

A body scan can help you check your feelings, emotions, and overall sensations. Sit or lie down. Close your eyes. Slowly scan up and down your body for tightness and soreness. If you find a tight spot, stop and breathe into it until it relaxes. You might also imagine healing, white light radiating into the spot, bathing you in soothing calm.

3. Object Meditation

This can be done with any object you like, such as a favorite photo, a vision board of the goals you want to accomplish in life, and so on. Meditate on the object and the way it makes you feel when you look at it. Use all your senses to immerse yourself in the sensation.

4. Mindful Eating

This is a great one to practice every time you eat, so you will relax, slow down, and not wolf your food without tasting it. Chew each mouthful slowly, mindfully. Pay attention to all the sensations of the food, including taste, texture, crunch and so on. 

5. Walking Meditation

A walking meditation gives you physical as well as mental exercise, thus lowering stress. Walk slowly and methodically, eyes on the ground a few steps ahead of you. Walk naturally, without trying to force it. You can do this with affirmations.

6. Affirmations

Affirmations are positive sayings that help you focus on your goals. They should be short and to the point, to help you focus on your goals. "I can handle anything" is a good one for relieving stress.

Try these six mindfulness exercises and see what a difference they can make to your stress levels.

Next time we will look at ways to help fight negativity.

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