Some days fly by. Others seem to drag. When we are stressed we tend to experience time in a different way because our mind gets full of worry and anxiety. We can feel pressured that we don’t have enough time to do everything we feel we should. Or we can think that what we are hoping for isn’t happening fast enough. Our lives have a tendency to change more often then we are perhaps prepared for so time speeding up or slowing down is a way of keeping the change under control. However, we can end up focusing too much on the past or the future, feeling like we are getting less & less done and becoming certain that we are stuck. Mindfulness is a way of stepping out of the stuckness so that we can release that thought or feeling.
The term mindfulness actually comes from some forms of Buddhist traditions. It is the practice of moving your attention to the experiences of the present moment. In this way the past and future issues are removed from your attention. Any uncomfortable thoughts and feelings which have been going on can be released and removed. Another way to explain this comes from the phrase ‘living in the here and now’. When we find our selves with too much worry or concern about what might have already happened or with anxiety about what might be happening next week, month, year mindfulness encourages us to stop those thoughts and feeling by concentrating on what we are actually doing right now.
This is how it works. Right now I am trying this article. I type with one finger on each hand. My spelling is a bit random as I miss the keys now and again. I enjoy the words appearing on my screen. They are reminding me to pay attention to my writing which is something I love doing. Now I’m pausing to see what the next though is so I can type some more. As I look at those sentences I have made a couple of typing mistakes that I am now correcting. All of my attention is on finishing a good piece in the right number of words. I am completely in the moment about the work I am producing.
Whilst I was typing that paragraph I wasn’t thinking about anything else. I was checking out how it felt to be writing & what my train of thought was. The worry of the article deadline had faded from my mind. I was being mindful of what I was doing. You can practice mindfulness doing anything. All you have to do is pay complete attention to the inner & outer experience you are having right now. So, you are reading about mindfulness. It will be causing you to think & feel something about mindfulness. You will have stepped away from your worries for a while. Keep being mindful and your worries will fade away.