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What the heck is mindfulness?

Is it a buzzword, like self-care?

I have heard the word mindfulness at least 15 times this week (ok, maybe it was 3 times), so I started wondering what the hell it is.

Here is the dictionary definition:

  • The quality or state of being conscious or aware of something.
  • A mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.

Mindfulness is being in the moment, fully present. Living in the digital age with our smartphones being an extension of our hands makes this difficult to achieve. Is it really that important? Is this a craze like “self-care?”

If I hadn’t accidentally fell into mindfulness earlier this week, I would’ve shrugged it off and cracked some jokes about it and that would have been that. I shattered my phone screen at the office on Tuesday, because I am a total klutz, it was so bad I cut my hand on the glass – nice job Bode (Genius Phone Repair to the rescue). I dropped my phone off to be fixed and was told it would be about 30 minutes, since I wasn’t going to sit around and wait, I decided to go grab lunch.

I ATE LUNCH ALONE ON A PATIO WITH NO PHONE. This really happened, and I am so glad it did. I sat out on the patio with a pad of paper and a pen, wrote down some thoughts, actually tasted my lunch and observed my surroundings. Holy shit, it was awesome!

We use our devices as a crutch, if we are in situations by ourselves or simply feel uncomfortable, we turn to our phones. Embrace the uncomfortable, relish in it and you might just learn something about yourself.

I walked away from that lunch with a commitment to try to live in the moment versus worrying about everything that could possibly/maybe happen….and maybe set my phone down every once in awhile (baby steps).

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

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