Mindfulness and Compassion in Lincolnshire
Mindfulness in Lincolnshire
Mindfulness in Lincolnshire
What is Mindfulness?
It is said that as human beings we already have exactly what we need to be able to experience the joy and wonder of each moment. We have what we need to be able to appreciate the preciousness of each moment.
However, it's not always easy to be in the present moment because our minds may be too busy in the past or thinking/worrying about the future. As a result we may miss many wonderful and helpful things.
Mindfulness is based on an ancient eastern practice and it offers a way of getting back in touch with these through being more attentive in a particular way. Often Mindfulness is simply noticing what we may not normally notice.
Mindfulness is one way to bring full attention to our life; to be more aware and awake in our daily activities rather than being on automatic pilot, rushing around, or barely noticing anything at all.
It may be understood as "friendly, non-judging, present-moment awareness." (Brantley 2007). It is simply a practical way to notice our lives in a particular way.
What sorts of things might we notice?
We can be mindful of breath, activity, thoughts, feelings, our bodies and what is around us. It can be an invitation to be in our senses and less often in our minds. It can include anything that is in our experience in any moment.
Is there a difference between Mindfulness and Therapy?
There are many ways to approach life and its challenges. Another way is therapy. Therapy often focuses on finding ways to solve problems and many people find this helpful.
Mindfulness is a different approach to therapy and neither one is better than the other.
By contrast, Mindfulness invites us to stay with our experience rather than try to change or fix things. Whilst practicing, we are reminded to just notice and be with what is happening and to see what happens when we do. And here we discover that Mindfulness is full of paradox.
When we are with our experiences in this way, we notice over time that we may actually feel more, rather than less relaxed and calm.
Mindfulness can help us to find our core of self-confidence and even a source of inner peace.
"Mindfulness means paying attention
in a particular way: on purpose,
in the present moment,
and non-judgmentally." (Jon Kabat-Zinn).
There are qualities and attitudes that support a more Mindful way of being.
Two of these are Kindness and Compassion. As with Mindfulness, we do not need to make these qualities or to get them from anywhere else. We all have these qualities within us. However, we may need to cultivate compassion and kindness, especially toward ourselves, and learn what blocks our ability to experience these more often in our day to day lives.
Therefore, one of the key components of Mindfulness is learning to observe ourselves and our experiences in a compassionate and non-judgmental way. Becoming more aware of our thoughts, feelings and sensations in this way can have unexpected and even surprising results.
Mindfulness is not simply a technique.
It is an act of love.
Our willingness to see,
to hold ourselves closely
just as we are,
while being this way with another,
is a revealing and deeply healing
expression of care.
(Saki Santorelli, Heal Thy Self, p20)