You know what can really throw me off my game? Thinking about all of the stuff I have to do. It. Never. Ends.
Alarm goes off….snooze…..alarm again….noooooo….snooze….crap….aaahhhhh…..get up! From there it’s so easy to get lost going through the motions. Eat, get dressed, driving, school, work, errands, dinner, bedtime, and around we go. Always planning for the next step while mid-stride.
Oh wait. I got this.
Enter mindfulness stage right.
John Kabat-Zinn defines mindfulness as “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgmentally.”
Give some thought to your day to day routine. How often is that thinking brain of yours paused so you can experience the fullness of the present moment? When do you bring awareness to the sound of birds or recognize the incredible power of each breath you take? Probably not so much. We are often distracted and have so much to do. But by creating space for awareness of the moment, non-judgmentally, we lighten our load. These moments of awareness are like the roots of a tree that keep us grounded when our thoughts are fluttering around like branches in a storm.
Starting young I was an expert at self critique. Motherhood took that to a whole new level where I questioned every decision and focused on my real and imagined flaws. It created a never ending list of all the stuff I have to do. I would find myself longing for stages to be over – not sleeping, teething, bottles, diapers, tantrums. But motherhood made me recognize the incredible value of practicing mindfulness to stop the inner critic, and to savor every moment because it all goes by so fast.
But mindfulness isn’t just for the mamas. Evidence shows that it helps with depression, anxiety, over eating, sleep disorders, pain, anger, attention, and a variety of health related issues.
It reduces stress, people, and who doesn’t want some of that goodness?
I work with my clients to help them implement mindfulness into their daily lives in order to promote better physical and mental well-being. This means training the brain to slow down and savor the present moment. And isn’t that all we have? Right now, this very moment. Let’s experience it fully.
“Practice sharing the fullness of your being, your best self, your enthusiasm, your vitality, your spirit, your trust, your openness, above all, your presence. Share it with yourself, with your family, with the world.” -John Kabat-Zinn
By: Bonnie C.