Today we speak with Andreea Ayers, founder of Launch Grow Joy and Get Media Happy. Andreea is an exceptional business mentor and helps entrepreneurs build their product based businesses. She's had two successful product based business of her own and now helps others market and grow their brands.
Today she offers insight on how mindful living keeps her on track and shares the techniques she uses to achieve success everyday!
(SE) What does Mindfulness mean to you?
(AA) Mindfulness means being awake and present in every moment. It also means being intentional about the actions that I take (or not take) - everything from the food I eat to how I spend my time at work and with my family and what things I say YES or NO to.
(SE) What tools do you think are essential for living mindfully?
(AA) Introspection, taking time to breathe and creating a quiet space are essential for living mindfully. It's so easy these days to always be doing something - whether it's working or answering texts or checking social media on your phone or saying YES to everything because you feel like you have to. We've become so used to being driven by other people's agendas (whether it's social media, email, phone calls or texts), that we are always reacting to others instead of being mindful of our own needs.
(SE) Do you have a mindfulness practice, if so, what does it look like?
(AA) I go on reflective walks every morning before I start work. Usually my walks are about 30-40 minutes long and they give me the time I need to get ready for the day, to think about what I might need that day and to just unwind, but also to get energized at the same time. Sometimes I'll pay close attention to my breath as I walk, which helps me to stay calm and focused.
(SE) When did this practice begin?
This practice began when I started working for myself and I realized that it wasn't healthy to wake up, eat and sit down at my computer for hours on end. It took me a few years of burnout to realize this, but as soon as I started walking before work, I felt much more focused and calm.
(SE) How did you get started?
(AA) I started by simply doing it. At first, I felt like I was taking time away from my work by going on a long walk every morning, but as soon as I would come back from my walk I realized that I was so much more ready for the day ahead.
(AA) It's helped me to stay grounded and focused and it's given me the space that I need to really think. I never bring my phone on these walks, although I did start listening to podcasts or music on my iPod. I especially love it when I walk a bit faster and it really helps me to get my blood moving and it gives me energy.
(SE) That makes a lot of sense and actually, we have had several pros recommend walking for mindfulness. What advice would you give to someone who would like to incorporate a mindfulness practice into their daily routine but cannot find the time or the headspace?
(AA) I can definitely relate to that! My advice would be to start small. Even five minutes of a walk or a meditation or breathing can make a difference and you can increase it by a bit each week. The more you do it, the easier it gets. For me, my walks have become non-negotiable. Even if it's 100 degrees or 0 degrees out, I still go for a walk every morning!
(SE) So many experts have told us that as well, I am starting to believe it is really as simple as just giving yourself 5 minutes a day! Is there a particular practice you would recommend to cultivate mindfulness?
(AA) I think that putting your mobile phone down, turning off all notifications or even turning off your phone is the first place to start. We are so glued to our phones these days and they drive everything we do. By putting your phone away, you're giving yourself the time and space to be mindful of your thoughts, your day and your life.
(SE) Can you list three, everyday things that we can do to stay in the present and live a mindful life?
- Turn off your phone or put it away.
- Start small and make YOU a priority, even if it's just for a few minutes (this is especially important if you have young kids)
- Do it consistently until it becomes non-negotiable
(SE) Are you currently working on anything you would like to share with the Soulful Essence community?
(SE) Can you share a fun fact about yourself or your business?
(AA) I love biking and yoga and I miss skateboarding!
(SE) Is there anything else you would like to share?
(AA) It takes 21 days to form a new habit, so it might seem harder when you are first starting out, but you have to keep going and push past the doubts and negative thoughts at first.