Going through the motions. Getting a job done. Juggling tasks. Managing your time. Finishing the paperwork. Making the commute. Swiping the credit card. Working down the to-do list.
Contrast the picture above with the picture below.
Going the extra mile. Getting a grasp of the root of a crisis. Juggling family needs. Managing symptoms. Starting to engage. Staying present with a loved one. Carrying out what you promised. Adding up your treasures.
I believe we are all people who prefer to exist in the second picture above. What takes us away from that second picture are all the things in the first picture. The reality is that those distractions only take us away from our living if we let them. The result is increased stress, which in turn leads to a less satisfying life.
Our days are filled with things to do, but in order to do all those things, we must also fill ourselves. What fulfills us, and ultimately fulfills the deeper needs of our relationships, is not the things we do, but the way in which we do them.
Mindfulness is the art of staying aware of the moments of life. In mindfulness, we remain aware of the journey of our day, the experience of our interactions, and the impact of our choices. In this awareness, we begin to develop the ability to see beyond our immediate surroundings and into the broad reaches of our intersections with others and the world. Mindfulness is the first step toward connectedness and community.
To start your mindful journey, set aside 5 minutes each day. Create quietness around you. Step away from your devices, shut out the world, and look within. What are 2 things you can sense with each of your 5 senses? What sounds can you tease from the quietness? What images flash through your mind? What scents are carried on the air? What did your last meal taste like? How tense are the muscles of your face?
It is possible to create a better life for yourself. If you are struggling to create quietness, or you find the experience upsetting or disturbing, I am here to help.