How mindfulness can help you reduce stress and feel happier

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - A technique called mindfulness can help you stick to your New Year's resolutions.

Counselor Jen Johnson joined us on WECT News First at Four Monday to talk about the meditation technique which can not only help reduce stress and anxiety but can also help you feel happier.

"All of the work that I do when teaching people how to increase peace, happiness and wellbeing is grounded in mindfulness training, because it's the best foundation I've found for helping people to make any kind of changes," Johnson said.

Here are her tips for your practice:

  • Make a commitment to your own wellbeing. Eat healthy foods, exercise regularly, get adequate sleep, drink adequate amounts of water and limit your exposure to toxic chemicals.
  • Focus some attention on what is good in your life and the world. You can encourage positive mental and emotional states by pausing to notice and feel grateful for what's going well in your life. Take time each day to notice something beautiful in the simplicity of your every day. If you need some extra encouragement in this area, follow my Instagram account @MeditateCreate where I'm posting mindful photographs of the beauty in this world.
  • Practice compassion toward yourself and others. Treat yourself and others with kindness and an open heart. People who are kind to themselves have an easier time reaching their intentions and goals.
  • Practice saying, "No." If you're in the habit of taking on too many things and then feeling overwhelmed, practice saying yes to the things that matter most and no to the things that don't. Set priorities, and make intentional choices about where you put your time and energy.
  • Make thoughtful choices about what you feed your mind. Find a balance that allows you to stay informed about issues that matter to you without overindulging in information overload.
  • Get out and connect with nature. Slow down, and rest your awareness on the beauty that surrounds you. Take a walk. Pause to notice what you see, hear smell, feel and taste. Listen to the birds singing. Notice the color of the sky, the trees and the leaves.
  • Live intentionally. Clarify who you want to be in the world, how you want to feel and what matters most to you. Open your heart to the power of creating a life that you love.

Learn more by emailing Jen at or clicking here.

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