A Mindful Moment
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Have you ever driven to work — and then not remembered how you got there? Or stopped enjoying the last few days of your beach holiday because you were so stressed about “getting back” to your real life? Perhaps you keep remembering something that happened and thinking “I should have… or I could have” over and over then suddenly realizing you missed the last five minutes of a loved one telling you about the special day they had.
Many of us go through our days on autopilot and are never aware of this present moment. Our minds are often rehashing the past, rehearsing for the future or even resisting the present moment. What if we could become aware of not being present in our own life? Imagine if we were able to tune in to right now? It is all we need to return to the pilot seat and choose to enjoy a pleasant moment more deeply, or interrupt the stress cycle and help ourselves respond more effectively with the difficult moments of life.
This upcoming series of articles will introduce you to mindfulness meditation and step away with some strategies to start introducing mindful moments in your life. Now. Mindfulness is a secular, scientific and evidence-based modality that has been shown to enhance quality of life, mitigate stress and improve many medical conditions.
"The awareness that emerges through paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally to the unfolding of experience moment by moment.” —Jon Kabat-Zinn.
This definition highlights awareness through paying attention to this present moment with a sense of kindness, compassion, acceptance and non-judgment.
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Take a Mindful Moment Right Now
Tune in to the feeling of your feet on the floor, the weight of the magazine and the feel of the paper in your hands. Notice any sensations of warmth or coolness in the air, the light in the room, the sounds you hear. Now bring your attention to your breath at the tip of your nose. Take one minute for yourself and just keep your attention on your breath. As your attention wanders, just notice where it has been — whether an emotion, a thought or a sensation — and gently, bring your attention back to your breath. There is no thing you have to do, no where you have to go, no person you have to please. Whether your attention wanders once or 20 times, bring your focus back to your breath.
Whenever you notice you are in midst of chaotic thoughts and stormy emotions, take a deep breath in and allow your outbreath to be an anchor in the stormy seas. Meet yourself with kindness in this moment.