The Benefits of Being More Mindful

As part of the journey on this road to ‘Self-Compassion Enlightenment’ let’s call it, I have delved into the valuable art of Mindfulness and man what a cracker of a practice to learn and too good not to share what I have found with you all.

It’s not easy by any means and in times past the old “No time, very busy… Hmm what shall I cook for dinner?… Oooo I need to get to the dry-cleaners before they close… Why are Sydney house prices so ridonkulous at the moment?… Wonder if so and so has replied to my email yet…What life dependent things have I missed on Facebook in the last 10 minutes?… I really should get out on my bike more… and on and on ’til my brain was screaming at me “STOP THE MADNESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!”.

These distraction demons did their best to pop into my mind at every opportunity during the first few weeks of practice and then I’d then in turn get annoyed with myself that I wasn’t focusing on the practice and so the awful cycle continued.

Once I’d learnt to let those thoughts pop up and then drift away, (with an interested yet non-judgmental “mindful” acknowledgement of course first), I found and continue to find the practice so incredibly beneficial on so many levels.  Rather than just being an interesting skill to learn, it becomes a way of being and gives you a new perspective in all your everyday activities.

Being more mindful can lessen the infernal chatter of your internal dialogue that can be so distracting with its busyness.  Rid yourself of those thoughts or feelings that pop into your head and drive you bonkers!  So much information just floating around in there and interrupting the day can harvest all sorts of unproductive behaviours.

I empathise, that used to be me! No matter how much I ordered those thoughts to “Take a number and wait in line buddy”, there they would stay, caught up in the white noise of my attempted multi-tasking.  Ughhhh…. this would of course then lead to some unhelpful negative self talk that we all know has no place in our new emotionally evolved lives – right?  Right!

Mindfulness is something that develops and deepens over time with practice and whilst it requires a certain amount of commitment, it encourages being present and being kind to yourself.  And there it is – I assume you’re all on the Self-Compassion Train if you’re still reading down to this point so I applaud you.

I could talk for hours about the joys of living more “Mindfully” but I really encourage you to jump aboard and give it a go yourself.

Find a course, source a teacher, read a book.  I can highly recommend: “Mindfulness – a practical guide to finding peace in a frantic world” by Mark Williams and Danny Penman that comes with a CD with 8 guided meditations.  I’d lend you mine but I dropped it in the bath when I was taking some Self Compassionate “me-time” and reading said book surrounded by heavenly scents and bubbles galore…

…OK so it’s an awesome practice but it doesn’t cure clumsiness – I put that down to genetics ;)

Miranda Murray