Mindfulness is about being aware of what’s happening around you. You’re mindful of what you’re doing, seeing and feeling at that time, and not dwelling on the past or worrying about the future. It’s about experiencing things as they are and not overthinking them. If you’re living ‘in the now’, you’re more likely to be happy, self-confident and hopeful. You’re also less likely to be depressed, angry, anxious, or even get sick.
Most people spend much of their time mindlessly living. Ever been watching TV or surfing the internet and suddenly realised that three hours have gone by? Sometimes it’s cool to zone out for a bit. But if you’re wanting to get your head around what mindfulness is – think of the opposite of mindlessness.
All it takes is practice. You can practice anywhere, doing anything. It’s just about doing the one thing that’s in front of you.
Here’s how you can get started. Try and unplug, turn your phone off, ditch the headphones, and just be aware. Maybe close your eyes, if that feels OK. Just notice what you hear, what you feel on your skin and in your body, and what you see. If you notice thoughts (like “I should be doing other stuff”), just observe it, like you would watch a leaf floating down a stream. Don’t get caught up with the thought, and it will fade away.
Give your full attention to what you’re doing and it can help calm the chaos in your mind.