Learning to be mindful is a process, but one that benefits you in a myriad of ways. It helps fight PTSD, any emotional issues, increases your ability to focus, and may even help combat memory loss. There are numerous physical benefits as well, from pain relief, reducing heart disease, and improving sleep to aiding in weight loss.
Mindfulness originated in Buddhism originally as a meditation performed while seated. Since then, it has been adapted to our more active lifestyle, and is now recognized as a form of cognitive therapy. (My former psychologist was a certified trainer in it, and taught me.)
All these attitudes are not easy to change, some more so than others. The first attitude of mindfulness is non-judging. To me that means not only to not judge others, but also not judging yourself too harshly. You never know what’s going on in other people’s lives to make them act the way they are. (There are a few exceptions, but…)
The next attitude to practice is patience. When I was growing up, people at the church my parents brought me to used to joke that they didn’t want to pray for patience, as they would then be given nothing but test after test to try to grow it. Of course this was not what they wanted! Counting to 10 before responding to something helps here.
The third attitude is having a beginner’s mind. This means approaching every situation as if its the first time you have encountered it. Even if it’s the 200th time your kids are acting out. Don’t go into the situation thinking you know what they’re thinking or feeling….they might surprise you.
Next time I’ll get into the rest of the practices of mindfulness. What have your experiences been with the ones listed above? I would love to hear your stories! Like my blog? I would be honored for you to share it!