Mindfulness - It's More Than Just A Buzzword
Hi dear reader, Lindsay here. Since I am nearing the completion of my mindfulness meditation teacher training, I would like to share a few words about what mindfulness meditation is about.
"Mindfulness" has become a trendy word in the self care world but what does it actually mean to be mindful?
Mindfulness meditation originates from the Buddhist 4-Noble Truths based on suffering, the 8-Fold Path, and the nature of impermanence.
We often go throughout our day stuck in autopilot. Have you ever driven from point A to point B and have no recollection of how you got there? Mindfulness refers to attention without judgment to the things that are happening in this very moment. This includes attention directed both inside and outside of ourselves. Examples include attention to our feelings, bodily sensations, emotions, thoughts, conversations, sounds, etc. Mindfulness wakes us from our sleep of automaticity.
Through a mindfulness practice, we become observers of our internal state with a kind and gentle willingness to acknowledge, allow, and accept any thought, feeling, emotion, or sensation as it arises. On average, we have about 50,000 thoughts per day. Through mindfulness, we can learn to act with intent versus reacting and begin to identify less with our thoughts, feelings, and emotions.
There are formal and informal mindfulness meditation practices. An example of a formal practice would be a seated meditation or a body scan. Informal practices include more of our daily activities such as bringing acute awareness to brushing your teeth or social interactions.
A mindfulness meditation practice is not about relaxation, absence of thought, or zoning out. It asks us to sit with 'what is' in this moment. You have to come to a mindfulness practice at the right time. You need to be ready to listen carefully without trying to make things better or different. Mindfulness is about living life on purpose and creating an understanding about your mind, yourself, and your interaction with the world.
"Praise and blame, gain and loss, pleasure and sorrow come and go like the wind. To be happy, rest like a great tree in the midst of them all." ~Buddha
Registered Massage Therapist
Registered Yoga Teacher