Have you ever driven somewhere and realised when you arrived that you couldn’t really remember anything about the journey ? Or have you ever eaten a whole packet of biscuits when you were planning to only have one ? Or have you stayed up much later than you planned, or even all night, watching ‘just one more’ episode of a TV series ? All of these are examples of mindlessness. When we live this way, we are not fully awake and not fully living our lives.
For most people life is getting busier and busier. Technology means that we always have something to do and there isn’t much opportunity to just ‘be’. People are often doing two or three things at the same time: texting while watching TV, or even looking at their phone while walking along the pavement. People are working longer hours and bringing work home. All this can make us stressed, and mindfulness can be a way of reducing this stress!
What Is Mindfulness ?
Mindfulness means living in the present moment. Essentially, it means being (intentionally) more aware and awake to each moment and being fully engaged in what is happening in one’s surroundings – with acceptance and without judgment.
Moreover, according to the Cambridge Dictionary, mindfulness can be defined as the practice of being aware of your body, mind, and feelings in the present moment, thought to create a feeling of calm.
Common And Simple Examples Of Mindfulness
1. Mindfulness can mean being aware of your breath. Realizing the changes within your abdominal area as your body receives adapts to the inflow of air each time you inhale and exhale.
2. Focusing your attention on the food you are eating is another example of mindfulness. Fully feeling and paying attention to its temperature, its crunchiness or its flavor and not to the people eating together with you, your smartphone or your tv.
3. When you are walking, paying attention to how you are feeling is also synonymous with being full. Are you wearing a backpack that is making your back feel heavy and perhaps hurt ? Are you in a rush and your heart is beating faster than if you were calmly walking ? Is the street quiet or noisy, empty or filled up with people?
4. Mindfulness can be found in every action you take, as long as you make the effort to be aware of your body, your emotions, and your surroundings.