Mindfulness - whats it all about?

anxiety breathing exercises challeges challenges living mindfully managing stress meditaton mindfulness stress Jul 26, 2021

Take a minute everyday and just look around you. Name what you can see, hear, feel, smell, and touch. You can do this anywhere, you don't have to be in nature but nature does offer us something of a treat.

The video clip is an example of this practice. Just looking and listening. The skill is in knowing that you are looking, so naming what you can see and hear and feel in the moment is mindfulness. 

Personally I love to see light, the dappled light on the ground of the woods where I walk. Observing light in nature is a good start, it moves and changes, it is not permanent. 

We are all different therefore I can only give you my personal experience of mindfulness and try to share the joy that I feel from living mindfully. I can say that I do live in relative calm and peace. I am happy, relaxed and calm. However I always stress that mindfulness is not positive thinking full of sugar coated inspirational quotes. It really does take some effort, but it is worth it.

At first it can feel impossible to take control of your thoughts. Truly hard to comprehend because until we look at this state of being most of us are trapped in a cycle of repetitive thought cycles. Often negative or unhelpful thought patterns.

Over thinking.

Not present. 

For example, how often are we thinking of something else when we are doing something other? Our mind is distracted by thoughts from the past and projecting into the unknown of the future. Conversations that we have had and those that we have not. The what if’s, and the feelings of regret replaying like an old song on the radio crowded out by the seemingly knowing predictions of what might never happen. 

Crazy stuff.

Yet we are all on this wheel some of the time, until that is until we choose to stop it.

Do you have a memory of when you last sat down and enjoyed the quality of time of when you felt at peace with yourself. A time when all the jobs have been done, that moment when you can tick off everything on the list. Its very satisfying, even though you know that it is all going to start again.

Mindfulness will keep you in that sweet spot of space regardless of what you have to do.

The practice doesn’t take away the things that need doing, or the reality of difficult and challenging times that we all experience in life.

Practicing mindfulness enables us to manage how we act and react to our thoughts and situations.

It’s all about knowing. Knowing the stress, the anxiety, the joy and the love. 

There is no right or wrong or judgement of ourselves or of others. 

Part of the practice is that of forgiveness and acceptance. Being able to move on.

Like any new skill it gets easier overtime. 

Mindfulness is the ability to observe your thoughts and check in with yourself. When your mind starts to go off somewhere, you just acknowledge that it's going off somewhere. I like to say down the rabbit hole. Just know that is what is happening and disrupt the though by being in the moment.

Stop, look and listen.

When you are lost, what do you do? Stop and look around. Be present. Repeat what you can see, the sky is blue, the flower is pink. What can you hear, the sound of a car in the street, your friend speaking to you? 

The more you practice this the easier it becomes.

What are you feeling? Anxious and tense, then repeat that to yourself, observe your breath and work with slowing it breath down. Change the rhythm, the beat of your heart, the language that you use.

Know what you are thinking and feeling. It's OK when it is difficult, the feeling is emotional and the intensity of the emotion will pass, like a wave crashing on the beach and calm will follow. You are able to control the calm because you know both extremes. 

So thats a brief description and in the mindfulness class we learn to identify these thought patterns and learn techniques to disrupt them.

What to expect form the class.

The class always starts with a brief chat which is a check in and usually sets the tone or theme for the session.

We start by becoming present by being aware of the space that we are in. 

There are breathing exercises and short meditations along with practices for learning to live mindfully.

Just turn up as you are, no need to get changed or have any equipment.

Be prepared to sit still for periods of time in a place where you are unlikey to be disturbed.

The class is on zoom and can be recored for people catch up with as a pod cast.

There is room in the session to discuss the work and share or experiences. This will be different for everyone. You don’t have to say anything at all but its often useful to listen and hear how other people are finding the work. This is another way to learn about mindfulness as it is often difficult to understand. 

Listen to Joe Wicks interviewing Russell Brand talk about mindfulness and meditation.

By signing up to classes with me you will have access to a private community space. This is a safe place to share insights and inspirations. 

Any questions, please get in contact. 

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