You’ve probably heard it mentioned around, Mindfulness is more than a buzzword. Some teachers refer to it as a movement.
Being ‘in the now’ or ‘paying attention on purpose’ are common slogans referring to mindfulness approach, and gaining heightened awareness is on everybody’s list.
Mindfulness has been around since the times of The Buddha and offers a way for us to embrace the present moment. Being present and aware in our immediate experience gives us the chance to tune in and really appreciate the vitality we encounter.
Mindfulness offers benefits like a path to freedom, not being locked into your past. It offers a way for your experience to have meaning, with a fresh hope for realizing the joy within each moment.
Since it does get called a movement there are many interpretations of this mindfulness. It is a door to a fuller life, reaching aspects of our day like breathing, exercise, nutrition, fitness and relationships. When we are mindful in these activities we can tune into the common thread running through them.
So How Do You Do Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is practiced mostly as a method of meditation. Many schools and teachers today offer teaching in Mindfulness Meditation.
It is a worthwhile practice to consider and, though it is implemented by some as a relaxation technique, for more in-depth tranquility, it can give us more.
It is helpful to many business people as a remedy for occupational burnout – emotional exhaustion, low productivity or even despair – and a fabulous aid for destressing.
The Mindfulness Lowdown
The most notable attribute of mindfulness is its quality of being non-judgemental. The main notion is to cultivate present-focus awareness and practice being non-judgemental.
This presents itself as embracing the current moment, the present or ‘now’, and being observant of our experiences in a non-judgemental way. We view our bodily and sensory experiences, and our thoughts, but we don’t judge them.
This comes as ‘not good or bad’ or ‘right or wrong’, but we observe them openly and try not to get caught up in the content of them. It is a useful practice and there are a number of ways we can grow and benefit from it.
Applying Mindfulness to Our Lives
You can practice mindfulness just about anywhere, anytime. Just by pausing to practice mindfulness for a few minutes at different times during your day you can help your days be better, and more in line with how you’d like them to be.
You can practice it for a short time or a longer time, it really is up to you. The benefit comes from actually trying it, because even a little can go a long way.
3 great times to practice it are: walking, eating or sitting. While sitting you can go deeper into the mindfulness practice.
Why We Need Mindfulness
There’s no doubt that Mindfulness is popular. It seems to be popping up everywhere – books, magazines, websites, on TV… everywhere. It has a large following and so many people swear by it, having realized its benefits.
Mindfulness gets associated with terms like ‘thoughtfulness’ or ‘kindness’ but the truth is that it is about awareness. What it offers is a way to be aware of your thoughts and feelings as well as what’s happening around you. It gives us the chance to break free of programmed behavior which we call ‘running on autopilot.’
People Run On Autopilot
All too often we do things without thinking, following behavior patterns that we have routinely (and arbitrarily) established in the past. This plays out in our reacting quickly and not thinking about the impact of our actions and words on ourselves and on others.
It happens in both the personal and professional environments and people mention that they don’t always realize they are doing it.
An example of this is when you back out of your driveway and head to work on a weekend when you intended to go to the mall or a friends house. Or sometimes you might drive home and have no memory of the trip.
How to Transcend Autopilot
Breaking free of autopilot is a joy to think about and offers us a chance to have real, live experience. Just the thought of feeling fresh and alive is definitely exciting.
Finding a fresh approach doesn’t have to be difficult or mind boggling, and it offers some good benefits. Some common gains are: reduced stress, unlock creativity, and boost our performance.
Mindfulness is like the opposite of being on autopilot. By viewing or observing our thoughts, sensations or emotions attentively and ‘paying attention on purpose’ we can get a fresh look at our experience with a glimpse of what it is to be real.
Mindfulness And Single-Tasking
One recommended practice for developing mindfulness is single tasking, doing one thing at a time and giving it your full attention. When we are alert and observant we can approach the heart of mindfulness, and this entails being in the present.
Examples are like being in your car, standing in a line, or even paying attention at work. Being mindful helps you notice when you are on autopilot, so you can change what you’re doing in the moment, rather than regretting it later.
You might find freedom in simple experiences as common as having a bite of food or brushing your teeth. The potential is there, your experiences are live and your very own so applying mindfulness approach is just waiting for you to find it.
The Benefits of Mindfulness
It seems, when you think about it, that Mindfulness offers nothing but benefits. Being free from the past and having a choice to get clear thinking is in line with what The Buddha called ‘right view.’ Just the thought of seeing clearly and making good decisions is definitely enough to open up your eyes.
You can focus on the present anytime, anywhere and this is the greatest part about Mindfulness. Even a few minutes at a time can brighten up your moments and as we all can imagine, the more you do it the more you get out of it. It seems that brightening up our days with Mindfulness is really a ‘no brainer.’
We see the benefits of Mindfulness approach and it makes sense that its popularity is growing. People are trying it, liking it and telling their friends about it. It is so useful that it is easy to see how it can be applied to our lives.
Being mindful, observant and attentive are definite pluses and help us grow our lives and relationships daily. Everybody knows that when our lives are going well that people like us more.
Being mindful is not only an action but a meditation and a state of mind. When we employ this practice in our lives we are definitely on our way to a better life!
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