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The Practice Of Smiling
The Practice of Smiling. The simple practice of smiling can actually trigger joy in the mind and body, helping relieve some of this pain by first accepting.
Mindfulness practice means feeling how you feel.
Instead of avoiding or shoving down pain, you accept it with care and attention.
But that doesn’t mean you have to sit in pain, doing nothing.
The simple practice of smiling can actually trigger joy in the mind and body, helping relieve some of this pain.
In this exercise, you will mindfully tune in to how it feels to bring a gentle smile across the face.
Allow the eyes to close, and find a comfortable sitting posture.
If you are able to, keep the spine straight to invite energy and alertness into the mind and body.
Begin by bringing your attention to the sensations of the body breathing.
Start with the abdomen, tuning in to the rising and falling.
Let the body breathe itself; you don’t need to breathe in any certain way.
After two minutes, move your attention to the chest.
Feel the expansion and contraction here as the body continues to breathe.
When you notice that the mind has wandered, simply bring the chest back into your awareness.
Allow two more minutes to pass.
Now move your attention up to the nostrils.
You may feel the breath at the tip or base of the nose or on the upper lip.
Pay attention to the subtle sensation of breathing here.
Open your awareness up slightly to scan the face.
From the forehead down to the chin, notice what you can physically feel.
Tune in to the eyes, the mouth, the jaw, the cheeks, and anything else that grabs your attention.
Finally, allow yourself to softly smile.
You may try thinking of something that brings you joy as a form of encouragement.
As you smile, notice how the face and the breath feel.
Tune in to any changes in the breath, the muscles in the face, and any feelings that arise.
You may try letting the smile go and bringing it back several times, tuning in each time to the experience in the body as you do so.
When you complete the practice and allow the eyes to open, sustain the smile for a moment.
Let the smile fade slowly on its own
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