In this day and age many of us have heard of mindfulness in one way or the other. Being mindful and practicing mindfulness has become something many of us apply or may have been advised to do so at some point by now. But when somebody says they are being mindful, what is it exactly that makes their behaviour qualify as such?
Despite the term mindfulness especially gaining popularity over the last years, it isn’t a new terminology and Mindfulness is believed to be an offshoot of Hinduism, developed by Siddhartha Gautama over 2500 years ago. So what makes mindfulness such a hype these days? Living in a world where it has become increasingly difficult to focus due to many distractions, many causes by technology, such as smartphones, tablets and such, it has become even more important to create awareness on the effects of all these distractions on our overall wellbeing. Always being reachable and ‘online’ by email, social media and text messages, has made it nearly impossible to disconnect and our minds are constantly in overdrive and multitasking is more the norm than the exception. All of this does not aid our mental health and wellbeing at all.
In order to understand how mindfulness can help us to disconnect, recharge and find the right balance between digital activity and digital disconnection, we need to understand what mindfulness means.
Mindfulness means being fully present, paying attention purposely in this moment without judgment. It means you are aware of what you are doing at this present moment and where you are without being overwhelmed or worried about what’s yet to come or happened in the past. It allows you to not only live in the moment, but be in peace with where you are in this moment.
Approaching life mindfully allows you to focus on what you are doing without worrying about any distractions. You can feel comfortable switching off notifications, knowing you will check your messages after finishing your current task. You can fully enjoy your walk at the park, despite that important meeting planned for later on, because you will be prepared for it when you need to be.
Looking at mindfulness in this manner, it makes sense it has gained so much popularity in this digital era and it makes even more sense to start practicing it if you aren’t already!