What is “mindfullness”? I think we are all aware of being “Mind Full”: Having a million or more things on your mind; Feeling exhausted; Stressed; Bombarded; Not enough time; Worries; Anxiety; etc… – a mind full of STUFF. Mindfulness simply is being fully present in the moment. While simple in concept, it is very difficult to to do – especially as an adult. I believe mastering mildfulness is likely a key to happiness – just look at children…the joy they experience jumping in a puddle over and over, the drive to play, expore, discover, the focus on a favorite activity or person…. Studies show that practicing “mindfulness” has many health benefits too!
I once thought “mindfulness” had to involve beein quiet, still, listening to bells, etc., but I have learned that one can practice “midfulness” all day long while doing regular activities: eating a meal; walking to and from places; work tasks; playing with your kids; talking with your spouse; exercising; washing your hands; cooking, etc. I understand that when you mind wanders away actively select to not follow those thoughts. Bring yourself back to being present in whatever you are doing. What do you see? What do you hear? What are touching? What do you smell? What do you taste?
As I grew to adulthood I became a natural “multi-tasker”, but that often moves me far away from a life of being present in the moment – being mindful.
Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese monk, teacher, poet, peace activist with great global influence, recently died at the age of 95. I have enjoyed his writing, speaking and teachings. I felt sad learning about his passing because I felt he made our world a tremendously better place.
I love how he speaks about mindfulness as “going back to yourself”. I think that is a beautiful expression and inviting expression.
In one of his many books, this one titled Peace In Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life, he writes about “Sitting Anywhere”:
“When you need to slow down and come back to yourself, you do not need to rush home to your meditation cushion or to a meditation center in order to practice consious breathing. You can breathe anywhere, just sitting on your chair at the office or sitting in your automobile. Even if you are at a shopping center filled with people or waiting in line at a bank, if you begin to feel depleted and need to return to yourself, you can practice consious breathing and smiling just standing there.
Wherever you are, you can breathe mindfully. We all need to go back to ourselves from time to time, in order to be able to confront the difficulties of life. We can do this in any position – standing, sitting, lying down, or walking. If you can sit down, however, the sitting position is the most stable…….”
Life is precious, capture its beauty. I am lucky to have a loving family, and wonderful friends. Like everyone, I have good days and bad days, happy days and sad days, patient days and crabby days, beautiful days and ugly days, etc. I try to “hold the bright side up” as much as I can because it makes me feel better, and I think it helps others feel better too. I am so far from perfect, but I try to be kind and respectful. I truly believe that life is precious and that there are so many extraordinary ordinary people and moments in life. I want to share and celebrate the “extraordinary ordinary” through my writing and photography. Please check out my photos at Fine Art America Photography https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/35-laura-smith; at Adobe Stock at https://stock.adobe.com/contributor/207669601/Laura%20Jean%20Smith or at Shutterstock https://www.shutterstock.com/g/LauraJSmith. Perhaps you will find something you would like to have as your own?