Mindfulness has become quite the buzzword in recent years. You may have heard about the importance of implementing the practice into your life. But what is mindfulness, really?
At its core, mindfulness is the ability to be fully present. This means that your attention is focused fully on what is happening here and now; not on past events, and not projecting into the future. You might be wondering why this is such a big deal, and why mindfulness has gained so much hype. The beauty of mindfulness is that when we are fully present, we are aware of ourselves, which includes what we are doing, thinking, and feeling. By being aware of ourselves, we can become less reactive to what is happening inside of us or around us. This gives us choice in how we show up in the world, and how we treat ourselves and others. This is a very powerful practice.
There are infinite ways to practice mindfulness. It is available to you in every moment of your life. You can try it right now. As you read these words, bring your attention to your breath. Notice the rise and fall of your chest and belly, the way the air feels cool on your nostrils as you inhale, and warmer as you exhale. Notice the feeling of whatever surface is supporting your body. The feeling of your clothing on your skin. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths, enjoying the present moment.
Nice work. All you did there was bring your attention to sensations that are happening in this moment. The breath is a great place to start, as your breath is always happening right now! You may have noticed that right now, in this moment, everything is okay.
By Kiah Loewen, RYT200, BHK
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