Let’s Get Mindful
Doesn’t mindfulness feel a bit slippery to pin down?
The word gets tossed around a bit haphazardly in self-help circles and by well-meaning friends. Knowing exactly what it is and how to apply it can be a bit tricky.
Before we get to the meat of what mindfulness is, let’s use food as our starting course to explain it. Read the following descriptions and make a mental note if you’ve been in any of these situations.
I. You’re sitting in front of the TV watching an episode of Spongebob Squarepants, shoveling some grub down your mouth. It could be a shish kebob or a bowl of oatmeal, but really, you have no clue what you’re ingesting. The show ends and you can tell by your faint burp that you enjoyed some barbecued chicken. Surprise!
II. You are excitedly preparing dinner for some friends coming into town. On the menu is a delicious filet of salmon, steamed carrots and whole grain rice. Everyone sits down, complimenting you on the meal and you excitedly catch up on the latest news. You’re particularly proud of the wine pairing. The long-awaited conversation is even more compelling.
III. You’ve been traveling abroad and all you’ve desperately wanted after a week away was a mixed green salad. Just give me some damn greens, you cry! You’d give up your citizenship for five cucumber slices. You return home and rush to the store asap to fix yourself a salad. Each bite of spinach and baby arugula lightly drenched in balsamic vinaigrette is culinary salvation.
With each progression, your mind gets more in tune with the food you’re consuming. In a nutshell, that’s what the practice of mindfulness is all about: getting closer to a moment-by-moment awareness of what’s happening right now in the present. In this case, it’s paying close attention to the sight, smell, taste, and texture of the food and really appreciating each of those qualities.
By linking up to the present, there is less room for judging your thoughts and feelings. Mindfulness takes the bite out of contentious situations; worry about the past or anxiety in the future gets chucked away like a discarded apple core.
Take a little nibble here and there this month to practice mindfulness. January is all about mindfulness at Thrive and it’s a street team month in the CLE, so stay tuned to our Facebook page for the 411 on a pop-up experience designed by our team of mindful pros… happening soon. Hint: It’s cold out there, this month’s experience will warm us up from the inside out.
Let us know how it works for you! Go to our Facebook page and share your experience!
*This blog post brought to you by Thrive Creative Team Member: Dan Dean