Mindfulness is paying attention in a particular way; on purpose,
in the present moment without judgement. —Jon Kabot –Finn
The most useful definition of mindfulness in today’s world is simply being conscious or having presence of mind; to be able to be aware in your everyday interactions and reactions to people, places and things. It is no wonder, when one practices mindfulness in their day to day lives that they may feel a sense of peace and tranquility in a world full of chaos.
The practice of mindfulness comes from Buddhist philosophy many years ago, but is seen in many other religious sects today such as Christianity, Hinduism and Judaism.
Mindfulness is a meditation of some duration to help the meditator feel more at ease in their lives while everything around them might be falling apart.
Mindfulness practice helps the practitioner live in the “now”, rather than the past or
future. Past-oriented thinking tends to bring on depression and future-oriented
thinking has a tendency to cause anxiety.
I think we can all agree that our earth is in chaos rather politically, religiously or
scientifically. No part of our world seems to be able to get away from the infighting
about global warming even though there is so much evidence for the necessity to act
quickly on this issue. We are in the longest war in our history that takes lives everyday
and has cost us billions. We are constantly bombarded with horrific stories and pictures
on Facebook how people are abusing or killing animals for sport.
The U.S. has become a laughing stock in other areas of the world for our presidential
campaign in 2016.
In all of this chaos and disconnect from our true nature of love and compassion, we seem
to find solace and peace in the practice of mindfulness.
Mindfulness is more than sitting for 20 minutes a day in meditation on the breath.
It is being able to incapsulate that peace into our daily lives as we interact with others
and are met with adversity along the way. It does however, take the practice of the
sitting-breathing meditation to enlist our brains to direct traffic in a less chaotic and
Can Mindfulness Practice Help Me?
Being mindful and practicing mindfulness on a daily basis can help anyone become less reactive to others and to the thoughts in our heads which is usually old programming and has nothing to do with us in this specific time in our lives.Mindfulness can also helps us understand our fears and allow ourselves to beconscious about the issue that brings fear and surrounds us without breaking us.
How do I get started practicing Mindfulness?
- Read a book on mindfulness
- Get involved at your local buddhist temple
- Take a class on mindfulness
If you chose self-directed mindfulness meditation, you can follow these
- Sit comfortably erect (modify according to your comfortable)
- Take gentle breaths with your eyes closed
- Focus on the breath
- If thoughts or sounds distract you, rather than pushing them away, simply refocus on the breath
- Do this consistently 2x daily and throughout your week Also, be aware that taking 3 simple breaths allows you to feel calm because it can help decrease your pulse rate if you are feeling anxious or stressed.
Practicing mindfulness in everyday life can help you be more peaceful, decrease your
reactions and increase the joy in your life!