In the vipassana tradition, we usually start by practicing mindfulness of the body, such as noting body sensations. You can use any activity—like washing dishes or walking down the street—to observe actual sensations, like the feeling of moving through space or of your hands in water. By observing those sensations and staying with them, you connect with the moment, with the direct experience. Of course, it’s hard to keep the mind from running ahead. You may feel one thing, such as a pain, and then the mind leaps into the future, saying, “I will always have pain.” By observing the sensation and your reaction to it, little by little you begin to discern the space between the direct experience and your conception.

Another technique is mindfulness of the breath. Watching the breath is a good way of training the mind to be in the moment. But it’s surprisingly hard to be mindful of each and every breath [not sure we could have just one breath]. You start imagining the perfect breath, and then chastise yourself for not having it. Then you’re leaning forward into the future, getting ready for the next five breaths. But by coming back to the breath over and over again, you can begin just to observe it, without bringing opinions and judgment.

By observing the sensations in the body and staying with them, you connect with the moment, with the direct experience. Another way of practicing mindfulness is to make a mental label of sensations. — Beliefnet.com, concluded