Mindfulness is a big buzz word right now and everyone wants to be more mindful, including me, but it feels like this HUGE thing. Right?
What do you think of when someone starts talking about mindfulness or being mindful? I first imagine meditating in a dark room for 30 minutes — a goal I have set for myself so many times, but never get around to it.
When people start talking about mindfulness it makes me imagine somehow plugging into the world or the energy of the world in a way I don’t usually.
Mindfulness makes me think of mental exercise. Mental exercise makes me think of exhaustion. And then I think, well I already have enough EXHAUSTION (thank you very much) and I keep scrolling.
But What If The Hype Of Being Mindful Is Distracting From The Ease Of Being Mindful?
What if we removed mindfulness from the hype and pomp and all the extra? What if we separated mindfulness from that gorgeous photo of that impossible yoga pose on the beach? What if we removed mindfulness from the 30-day Instagram challenges? What if we approached mindfulness from its core?
The most simple definition of mindful is:
mind·ful (adjective) conscious or aware of something.
Mindfulness is then simply a state of being conscious or aware of something.
Did your head just explode too? Yes, It’s just that easy.
You Can Be Mindful Anywhere!
You can switch in and out of mindfulness all day long! And, yes, that’s doing it right! Our brains help us plan, and contemplate, and sense danger, and feel joy just as much as they can help us move in and out of mindfulness.
It’s not an Instagram challenge! It’s not a 30-minute meditation. It isn’t impossibly difficult mental gymnastics.
- Being aware of the temperature of the water when you wash your hands. Noticing the smell of the water. The sound the water makes as it exits the spout and hits your hands and the sink below.
- Mindfulness is taking a minute to watch the rain fall outside. Watching the drops splat on your wood deck or form tiny puddles on the concrete. Smelling the rain. Feeling the dampness in the air. Being conscious of the size of the rain drops and the air pressure.
- Mindfulness is taking a moment to be conscious of the water falling on your head and over your body in the shower, how your sheets feel — crisp, heavy — when you wake in the morning, the smell of your morning commute, the sound of “quiet” when your kids are all at school — the fridge rumbling, the tinkle of the dishwasher as a glass rattles, the hum of the air conditioning. It’s coloring with your kids and noting the way the wax spreads across the area you’re filling in.
Mindfulness Is Simple
It is also rooting, grounding, connecting, heightening, a place from which to draw gratefulness, peace, and strength. It is all of those HUGE things, but it is also so simple.
Instead of trying to be mindful today, I ask that you notice the times you are mindful today. I guess I’m asking you to be mindful of being mindful. All those mindful moments are a practice. There is no right way. There is no set amount of time. There is no trying to be mindful.
You Are Mindful Already.