I live in Auckland, NZ and I often find that the City life can take its toll on me and leave me feeling stressed and agitated. Perhaps it's because I'm constantly running late and stuck in traffic or switching from my fulltime gig to my side hustle. Coffee is usually the quick fix for many of us and although I enjoy a daily brew or two (just look at my instagram), I need a different boost of energy and happiness which I can only get through practicing mindfulness.
Within Buddhism, the practice of mindfulness was developed in monastic settings in which monks were often cut-off from the outside world. Even Western contemporary writers of mindfulness typically live in rural settings, which probably is not a coincidence. So, where does this leave us city dwellers?
In Auckland we are blessed with an abundance of nature within and city and I urge you, wherever you are, to find those small pockets of green hidden in your neibourhood and simply stop, listen and be present in the moment. My all time favourate place in the city is the winter gardens in the Domain, I could literally spend hours here taking in the ever changing flora and fauna. If you haven't been do it!
There are many ways to achieve mindfulness for me its being in nature, but for you It could be as simple as stopping to take in the sights and smells on the way to work, or putting a beautiful plant or flower in your office. Maybe you can even surrender to the traffic, or allow yourself to get lost in a moment.
Whatever it is, if you allow yourself to stop and be present you will find the daily stresses will start to dissolve.