Techniques Dentists Can Use to Enhance Mindfulness
by Veronica Brattstrom
Tuesday, September 11, 2018
“Mindfulness can start at work,” says Sandy Dirks, LMT, Certified Bonnie Prudden Master Myotherapist. She suggests three ways practicing mindfulness can reduce stress and improve office performance:
- Practice “breathing in fours”
- Focus on breathing in slowly for a count of four.
- Hold your breath for four counts.
- Breathe slowly out for four.
- Repeat four times.
- Choose a visual cue
“Find an object that you walk by frequently, such as a chair or plant or doorway,” says Dirks. “Each time you pass the door, pause. Notice if you are holding tension in your body (clenching your jaw, tensing your shoulders) or if your mind is racing,” Dirks adds.
- If you’re holding tension in your body, breathe in and tighten the area, then breathe out and focus on relaxing the area.
- If your mind is racing, focus your attention on your breath. “Breathe in slowly through your nose, filling your lungs and expanding your abdomen, then breathe out forcefully through your mouth. Repeat three times,” she says.
- Take a (mindful) seat
“Most of us hold tension in our shoulders, especially if we are busy and focused on our tasks at hand,” says Dirks. She suggests that whenever you sit down at your computer or tablet, take a moment to:
- Pull your shoulders up towards your ears.
- Press your shoulders down, stretching to make a long neck.
- Round your back, pressing arms and shoulders forward, and drop your head forward.
- Tip the head slightly up, lift the chest, and press the arms and shoulders back.
- Repeat the sequence four times.