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Take 5 is a mini mindfulness-in-action practice. You don’t need to close your eyes or go to a quiet room to practice, Take 5 is intended to be done in the midst of your daily life.
. The main objective of the 30 Day Mindfulness Challenge is develop your own customized version of Take 5 that is meaningful, self-guided and sustainable. You are learning to integrate a new healty habit into your life that will stick. Take is a practice we can do multiple times throughout the day to help us re-focus, regulate our emotions, and get clear on what is the next best step.
We encourage you to follow the "Guided" Take 5 at least once every day. Take 5 guided practice is included as part of your daily content on the Challenge. We also encourage you to Notice the 'Cue of the Day' and Take 5 as many times as you can throughout the day. Noticing the Cue of the Day is your opportunity to guide yourself through Take 5. As your awareness grows over the Challenge, you are likely remembering to be mindful more often and therefore increasing the number of times you Take 5 daily.
We hear you! But the answer is simple: we're helping you develop new habits that will literally hard wire pathways in the brain and that takes lots and lots of repetition. The more we practice Take 5 and return our attention to the present moment (did you know humans have shorter attention spans than goldfish?!), the more we hard wire the circuitry of our brain to be and stay in the Zone. And in the Zone we experience less stress, more joy and peak performance so stick with all those Take 5s!
The key part to this training is to learn the Take 5 practice and be able to guide yourself through it. We encourage you to revisit Take 5 Instructions to review the five steps that make up Take 5. Important to integrate the practice into your life in a seamless way that is meaningful for you. Feel free to change the words, skip a step, or just focus on 1 or 2 of the steps. You can always circle back to revisit one of the steps to extend Take 5. For example after getting to Step 5, you can go back and notice the body and breath for a few more minutes and deepen your mindful awareness.
It is good awareness to notice the mind running away – this is the first step! Now, you can strengthen the muscle of mindfulness by bringing your attention back to experience the steps of Take 5 as often as you need. Important to bring a sense of kindness and non-judgment to yourself – wandering is what minds do! The whole point of the training is to increase your capacity for paying attention in this way, and is why we call mindfulness a practice.
It can be frustrating if we think we aren't doing it right. Again, this is something to try to notice and not react to. Our tendency is to evaluate whether we are doing it right/wrong and that takes us out of the actual practice. For the first while, simply focus on listening to the guided Take 5 from start to finish, and then also choose a few of the steps that you can implement on your own in the midst of your day.
If you are finding the mind increasing busy, simplify the practice to just following the breath, and bringing your attention back as often as you can to ride the waves of the breath moving into the body and moving out of the body.
It’s simple, fast-acting, portable, and universally-beneficial: Take 5 is a mindfulness tool that can be used anywhere, anytime. You can experience direct changes to the central nervous system in only a few minutes, and longer, sustained enhancement of neuropathways that are responsible for less stress, more joy, and peak performance in a few weeks. The 30 Day Challenge does not ask you to do more of anything, only teaches you to make whatever you are doing better.
Doing Take 5 with your eyes open just takes a bit of practice! With your eyes open and potentially sitting in a meeting, experiment with shifting your attention into your feet, lifting and lengthening up the spine, feeling the breath in the body. Don’t be too concerned about removing all other input from awareness, instead notice how you can shift your awareness to body and breath for a few moments (not minutes!) while you continue to stay engaged with what you are doing. It just takes a moment to reground ourselves and take note of our mindful mindsets.