Mindfulness 3 minute read

8 tips to establish your mindfulness habit

Mindfulness practice allows you to slow down and create the space to check in with your mental health. The more often you practice taking these quiet moments, the more benefits you’ll experience. However, this can be easier said than done.

The hardest past of meditation is actually sticking to regular practice. To help you better integrate mindfulness into your routine, we’ve looked into the science behind habit formation. Below are some tips to help you develop your own regular mindfulness practice - and make it a habit!


1. Decide why

It can be really motivating to know why it is you want to meditate. The clearer you are about your reason for wanting to bring mindfulness meditation into your day to day routine, the more likely you are to stick with it. 


2. Set achievable goals

Rather than saying “I will meditate everyday for the rest of my life”, try making short-term realistic goals, and adjust them to suit what’s happening in your life.

For example, you might plan what times you’ll set aside for meditation at the start of each week. Some weeks it might be to set aside a few minutes everyday, other weeks you might decide to do three longer meditations during the week. Allow for adjustment - remember, life happens, so don't beat yourself up!


3. Choose a regular time

In forming a habit it can be helpful to meditate at the same time of day each day. It might be first thing in the morning, on your lunch break or just before bed. Decide what works best for you, and try to stick to it. 

It can be effective to ‘piggyback’ your meditation onto the back of an existing habit. For example, your morning routine may be to get up, have a shower, and eat some breakfast.


You could insert your meditation after your shower but before your breakfast, thereby making it a part of an existing routine. 

NOTE: lots of people find themselves more successful at sticking to regular practice when they meditate first thing in the morning. Research shows that we have more willpower in the morning compared to the evening!


4. Find a space

Meditating in the same place each time can help it to sink in as a habit. Perhaps a comfortable chair you have in the living room, or a particular spot in your bedroom that is nice to sit – ideally somewhere that you feel comfortable and where won’t be disturbed.

That said, if you need to squeeze in your daily meditation on the train to work or in your parked car outside a meeting, that’s fine also. We want to remain flexible with our practice.



5. Pick a realistic length

Keep your meditation sessions to a length of time that feels comfortable - it’s always better to end a shorter session thinking you could have meditated for longer. The Smiling Mind App has lots of different length meditations you could try. We suggest starting with 5 or 10 minute meditations, and gradually increase the length of your sessions when you feel ready. 


6. Create a challenge

Set yourself a ‘21 day challenge’ to help kick start your meditation habit. Research shows it takes 21 days to create a habit, and that’s why we created the 21 Night Sleep Program. Head to the app and try out night one this evening!

sleep mockup-1


7. Identify your tendency

Gretchen Rubin (author of The Happiness Project) has developed a fascinating study around maintaining habits. Her framework splits everyone into four unique ‘tendencies’, with each tendency preferring a particular approach to creating and maintaining a habit.

You can check out The Four Tendencies quiz here, and adjust your habit approach accordingly!



8. Be patient with yourself

Like any new skill, mindfulness takes practice - so don't expect to master it straight away! Remind yourself that the goal isn’t to stop your thoughts; the goal is to notice when you’ve been distracted by them and to gently return your attention to your breath. If the activity feels welcoming and enjoyable, you’ll be more likely to maintain it.

It’s not about getting it “right”, it’s about doing it consistently.

Learning to meditate can be challenging, but even the most challenging meditation sessions are still beneficial.


Ready to create your habit?

We thought you’d never ask!

The easiest way to start is to simply download the FREE Smiling Mind app. And give a mediation a go, what have you got to lose?


All you need is 10 minutes a day to see real changes.

Georgie Vinson

Written by Georgie Vinson


Mindfulness is key to reducing stress in teachers

Data collected prior to the COVID-19 pandemic revealed 58% of  Australian teachers expressed high levels of stress and b...

Teachers, Schools 2 minute read

Mindfulness for small business - Part 2

In our previous blog we explored the benefits and challenges of running a small business - which has inspired the creati...

Business 3 minute read

Mindfulness for small business owners

There is much to love about running your own business. It often means greater autonomy when it comes to making decisions...

Business 4 minute read

Meet our new look app!

This week we launch a completely updated platform for the mobile apps of Smiling Mind. Here's what our Product Team had ...

Meditation 3 minute read
Quote of the week
“You are the sky. Everything else is just the weather.”
Pema Chödrön

At home

5 simple ways to get your kids into mindfulness

Mindfulness has many benefits for your mental health, which is equally as important as your physical health. 

Children, Family 4 minute read

How mindfulness can help during Coronavirus

We are living through an unprecedented and uncertain time, requiring each of us to navigate our way, as best we can, thr...

Children, Family, Parents, Anxiety 6 minute read

Dealing with the bushfire crisis at home

With images of distraught families fleeing bushfires, blackened homes, dead animals and smoke-filled skies, it's hard no...

Children, Family, Parents, Anxiety 2 minute read

At Work

Better sleep plays a major role in workplace success

Sleep, along with diet and exercise, is one of our major health pillars. However, despite its importance, sleep tends to...

Workplace, Tips & Tricks 3 minute read

5 minutes with small business owner, Tom Bosna

Meet Tom, Tom is a trained Physiotherapist and owns a small business, Pinnacle Health Group. Tom was kind enough to give...

Workplace, Business 5 minute read

How to incorporate mindfulness into your work day

As we enter the blank slate of 2021 the question to ask ourselves is: how do we find space in our workday for mindfulnes...

Workplace, Business, Mindfulness 3 minute read

At school

Mindfulness is key to reducing stress in teachers

Data collected prior to the COVID-19 pandemic revealed 58% of  Australian teachers expressed high levels of stress and b...

Teachers, Schools 2 minute read

How Smiling Mind’s Schools Program integrates with Be You

Are you looking for a new Personal Development program to boost your skills in the classroom? Check out Smiling Mind’s S...

Schools 2 minute read

5 minutes with teacher, Lucy Barrat

Meet Lucy, Lucy is a teacher at Methodist Ladies College in Mallacoota and spoke to us about how she uses mindfulness in...

Teachers, Students, Schools 5 minute read


Royal Commission into Victoria's Mental Health System is a game changer for mental health prevention

Smiling Mind has supported findings released today from the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System, speci...

Media release 1 minute read

New mental health program to support 600 schools across regional and rural Australia

As students settle into classrooms for the new school year, leading mental health not-for-profit Smiling Mind has opened...

Media release 2 minute read

Productivity Commission call for mental health prevention focus

Leading mental health not-for-profit Smiling Mind has welcomed the release of the Productivity Commission Report into Me...

Media release 1 minute read
Recent initiatives
Screen Shot 2020-11-16 at 3.30.05 pm

NAIDOC Week with Jack Charles