Mindfulness: What Is It and Why Bother?
You may have heard a lot about this word "mindfulness" lately. But what exactly does it mean and why should you even care? I'll attempt to answer that by throwing out a question to you:
Do you ever…
- Get wound up by the news and social media
- Find it hard to focus on the most important things
- Judge others or yourself reactively ("he/she is smarter, thinner, dumber" etc.)
- Eat too much junk food and/or skip exercise for just "one more day"
- Zone out for hours on the latest reality show and then wake up exhausted
If you said yes to any of the above, what's wrong with you?
Answer: Nothing. You're just human!
Good news, right? But that fact doesn't keep those behaviors from being destructive and from causing you and others to suffer. We want to stop them but they just keep happening.
So where do these unwanted thoughts and behaviors come from? They come from the unconscious conditioning of our own minds, from deeply rooted thought patterns that often work against us. They distract us from the very things that mean the most to us by throwing us out of the present moment.
Sounds a bit depressing, doesn't it? But it's really not – not at all. Underneath all this frenetic mental activity lies a totally different way to look at your world. A place of greater calm, focus, and – dare I say it – happiness.
How? By making the unconscious conscious. By understanding why that beautiful brain of yours makes you do the things you do. By being mindful of choosing your own course of response, not one handed down to you by evolution.
Mindfulness is a set of practices that help sharpen your concentration and your thinking power. The idea is to become: "Less Mind" and "More Full". When this happens you:
- Are calmer and able to deeply listen to others, regardless of their viewpoints
- Respectfully say no to things that aren't important
- Don't get caught up in personal, professional and societal dramas
Your body and your mind love mindfulness. It's the ultimate tool for resilience and for building strength against fear, stress, anxiety, depression, and anger – all those emotions that can throw us into panic mode. All those things that can throw our society into panic mode, too.
Mindfulness is the best gift you can give to yourself and others. So extend the holiday gift-giving season a bit by signing up for Resilience and Wellness!
In this workshop you will learn:
- What mindfulness is and why it's so important
- Easy-to-use exercises to help build mindfulness "muscles"
- The neuroscience behind why we do what we do
- How to be responsive rather than reactive
- Ways to overcome addiction to technology
Hope to see you there!-Robin Neymeyer