Mindfulness is Normal
Children used to be very mindful about what they said in front of adults because they might get a clip round the ear if they were silly. Being mindful means paying attention to what we say and how we say it. Even more than that, it means paying attention to how we act and how we re- act.
When your mind is full of STUFF, your body can suffer.
A friend who is a psychologist recounted the story recently of having to walk out from a training session on the river for an endurance event called the Avon Descent because he had dislocated his shoulder. The pain was intense so he focused on his senses, other than the pain: the sense of smell as he walked through the bush; the sense of touching the ground; the wind on his face.
Did it make a difference?
“Hell yes,” said John.
In fact he had been teaching mindfulness to some of his clients but this was his first real experience of ‘being completely in the present’ and it had made a considerable difference to his pain levels. He was quite amazed by how effective it was.
Not only can mindfulness practices be used to reduce pain, reduce anxiety and bring depressed people into a better space, it can also work for you in the office. If you have a better understanding of HOW you work, if you are observant of how you speak to others, you’ll get some amazing insights into what’s happening in your life.
WHY do we need mindfulness?
Is your mind full of STUFF? How is that fragmented jumble of thoughts coming and going affecting your ability to focus? Often our mind jumps from one thing to another, thinking about something we could have done better or we’re concerned about what we’ve got to do. The body becomes tense, shoulders tight, breathing shallow.
HOW can you know what to do?
The cartoon of the child shows that he or she is looking around and probably enjoying the moment. The senses are engaged and the person is ‘present’, not thinking of yesterday or tomorrow and problems yet to come.
Can you afford to feel permanently tense? What are the stress hormones doing to your body?
WHAT can you do to be more present?
Sitting in your office chair, it’s a bit hard to relocate to a space in nature but Awareness Training can teach you strategies for noticing when you are tense and ironing out the irritations that seem to wind you up.
If you can’t do anything about it, let it go
Notice how your body feels at different times and let go of the tension.
Stop for a minute – that’s all it takes.
Relax your shoulders, sit up straighter, sigh and breath deeply.
Think of something that makes you smile and your brain will change
Mindfulness can improve productivity