Some people say that you can practice mindfulness without any kind of a practice of meditation.
But it doesn’t quite work that way, not really.
If I were to ask to to intentionally become aware, of say, the weight of your body in your chair, you could probably do it, right? Intentional awareness=mindfulness. And you didn’t need to be a meditation practitioner to do what I just asked you to do.
But that’s an easy one.
Now see if you can become intentionally aware, or mindful, when the cowboy next to you is listening to his iPad at full volume during the restaurant dinner you’ve waited weeks to enjoy, or when you’re told at work there are going to be cutbacks, or when your child is screaming, or when you’re about to have a panic attack, or when the pain of your fibromyalgia is peaking.
Not so easy. It’s the perceived negativity of the experiences described here that draws our minds into mindlessness…which can of course then lead us into mindless behavior.
So it’s in the practice of mindfulness meditation that we really develop the skill of mindfulness, so as to be able to practice when we need it most – under the more challenging of life’s circumstances.
It’s like the basketball player who shoots layup after layup in practice, so that when he or she gets in the game – and the opponents are crashing down – they might actually make the shot.
In our practice of mindfulness meditation we practice becoming present, moment by moment by moment, so that when we’re in our game of life – and our opponents are crashing down – we might actually be able to generate a stable, calm, aware, and present state of mind.
Again, not so easy.
And so we practice.
Check out my video below and see if it makes even more sense as I describe mindfulness and how it’s really the practice of mindfulness meditation that enables the true ability to cultivate a life that’s mindful.
Hope so much this brings you benefit!