Dec 05, 2017


By Janet Hustak, PTA, Office Manager



"Mindfulness – A state of active, open attention on the present. When you’re mindful, you observe your thoughts and feelings from a distance, without judging them good or bad. Instead of letting your life pass you by, mindfulness means living in the moment and awakening to experience." – Psychology Today

So what does this actually mean? When I first heard about Mindfulness several years ago, it sparked my interest. But not enough to dig in and really understand it. After doing some research and attending a few classes, I think I am starting to get the hang of it. I am going to try and help you under-stand this method of "being here now".

Mindfulness is the practice of focusing your attention on the moment and, without judgment, ob-serving all aspects of the world around you as well as your thoughts, feelings and reactions. It is also called being aware. Although this sounds so simple, it's actually completely different from the way most of us live our lives. It is in complete contrast to being absent-minded or being overwhelmed by thoughts of what we need to do, what happened in our past, or what we should have done. We become anxious and afraid and we feel like life is slipping away. We are busy making plans for the future without awareness of the present. We hurry and worry and we're afraid to slow down. By living this way, we miss the actual life we are living. We also increase our risk of illness and injury.

Mindfulness is used as both a meditation and a method in everyday life. By practicing mindful-ness, people dealing with stress, panic attacks and emotion pain al benefit. In fact, it can be used by any-one to

simply enrich life, to deal with life’s ups and downs in a clear and calm manner, as well as reduce physical pain.

Each second of life should be savored. Even everyday chores and tasks can be very enjoyable if you pay attention to the little details that make things special. Be deliberate in your actions. Make note of things that awaken your senses.

Examples of everyday mindfulness include: 

While brushing your teeth, feel the stimulation of the brush on your gums, the taste and smell of the toothpaste and the coolness of the water when you rinse your mouth.  

When eating, feel the texture of the food in your mouth and the various flavors and aromas. Try not to think about other things or talk, and don’t think about your next bite until you have savored the cur-rent one completely.

When talking to someone, really listen and hear what they are saying without judging them, thinking of other things, or planning what you want to say next.

Life has cycles of good and bad. When we practice mindfulness, at the time something makes us upset, hurt or angry, we stop immediately to observe the moment. We become the witness of the circum-stance and become aware of our reactions. By looking at things in a non-judgmental way, we take the power away from the situation and do not let it feed our emotions.

While most of what we achieve is by "doing", mindfulness achieves its ends by "not doing", simply by observing—there is nothing to achieve" in a mindfulness session


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