I believe that we all want to be happy and that we are all afflicted by life’s challenges, in our very own and personal ways. But what makes that some people seem to flutter through life like a butterfly, seemingly not having a worry on their minds, while others seem to be in a continuous struggle, attracting one misfortune after the other?
A mystery, ladies and gentlemen? Not quite, I believe.
Sabine de Potter
Founder of Rainbow Mind
“You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.”
What is Mindfulness?
Paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally
Mindfulness is getting more attention nowadays as more studies come out showing the benefits of mindfulness. While the meaningfulness of the word mindfulness may be disputable, there is real evidence that being more mindful can enhance just about every aspect of your life. However, there are no shortcuts, you got to do some work…
Mindfulness originates in Buddhistic philosophy and is associated with qualities like awareness, presence, attention or focus. The opposite would be inattention, distractedness and lack of engagement.
Mindfulness refers to both a practice and a state of being. Practicing mindfulness means training your brain to stay focused, for example on the sensations of your breathing. The purpose is, however, to remain mindful when you pick up your daily activities. Being mindful means being fully engrossed in what is going on around you (using all of your senses), and inside of you (thoughts, emotions and physical sensations).
You may wonder: So what’s the point?
Increased mindfulness could help you become more focused, happier, healthier, more relaxed, and in control. Mindfulness can break the tendencies of being lost in memories of the past, or overwhelmed by the worries or projections of the future,
and instead make you fully appreciate the present moment – the only moment we really have.
Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, the ‘father’ of Mindfulness, defines it as follows:“paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally”and I like the words he sometimes adds to it:
“as if your life depended on it – because it does”