Mindfulness is absolutely vital to any sustainable and healthy change. More than ever, we are seeing the importance of the body and mind connection. Businesses, schools, churches and the diet and health industry are desperately trying to do the same thing that they have being doing for decades and fit mindfulness into a neat and marketable program. But mindfulness is not a program and there are no mindfulness formulas, because mindfulness is not a result and you can’t just do it.
So, what is mindfulness? According to the great Ellen Langer…
“Mindfulness is the process of actively noticing new things, relinquishing preconceived mindsets, and then acting on the new observations.”- Ellen Langer
Mindfulness is daily listening, asking, looking, moving, learning and living. Mindfulness happens when we exercise our senses to experience our daily life. Mindfulness happens when we are willing to be honest about the mindless choices we are making each day and when we are willing to look up up from our mindless and comfortably boring routines, and use our eyes, ears, noses, mouths, hands to see, smell, taste, hear and touch more.
I spent years with my head down, just doing it. Doing my job, taking care of my kids, going to the gym, going to church, eating to be lean and staying in my routines that required no thought, imagination, feelings or senses. I can distinctly remember when some of my routines were taken away and I went on a vacation and I noticed the sky. Years and years with my head down, just doing it and grinding it out, and I hadn’t noticed the sky. That’s insane. I finally noticed the sky and it was beautiful and I couldn’t quit looking at it. From this point on, something changed. Not everything immediately but little by little my spirit, heart, mind and body started to wake up and I begin to be set free from just doing it.
No offense but diets are boring. Exercise programs are boring. Online computer health and wellness programs are boring. Most information is boring. Texting is boring. Most TV shows are boring. Living to make money is boring. Overeating happens out of boredom. Living life through a phone is boring and being weighed, measured, watched, tracked and evaluated all the time based on our performance is not only not normal, but it never allows us to look up to see a whole world that is actually dying around us because we are addicted to boring ourselves to death.
You are not designed to just do it and check your Spirit, Heart and Mind at the door. MindlessNESS happens when you stick yourself in a formula to get a result. Mindlessness is when we say “Just tell me what to (do)eat to lose weight, just tell me what to (do) watch to be happy, just tell me what to (do)believe to be loved, just tell me what to (do) think to be smart, just tell me what to (do) consume to feel good, and just tell me what to (do) to be, feel and think to be accepted”.
As long as you keep just doing what you are told and surrendering your person to someone or something to be your spirit, heart, mind and body, you will continue to lead a very disconnected, empty, lonely and boring life. Where no amount of food, money, busyness, likes, TV, sex, physical experience, drugs, vacations, beauty, success, fame, power, attention and consuming will be enough to fill in the gaps made from the parts of you that are not living.
You are designed for more. You are designed to be nourished, feel nourished and use your whole-person including your mind to discover who, what, when and where you can receive and give the best nourishment. You have everything you need to be mindful today. Breathe, Listen, Ask, Look and Move to nourish yourself and open yourself to more. Look up from what you are doing, “What do you see?”.
Mindfulness is nothing more than being alive! See, touch, taste, smell and listen to yourself, others and your world. Living begins inside of you. Do you know who you are and how you are designed to live as a whole-person? Your life is where mindfulness begins. You are your most important gift to experience and enjoy. You are the most beautiful gift that you can give to others. You are more than your body and you are more than a mind. You are a spirit, heart, mind and body. You are a whole-person connected to be You. We need you and we need each other to grow in all ways, including mindfulness.