People talk a lot these days about being “cautiously optimistic” as we try to return to normal, whatever that is. Many Americans have begun a deep reconsideration of how they have lived, and how they should live in the future. Can we use this time in history to become better people? This big “rethink” will become clearer in the months and years ahead, but for the first time in decades, Americans are hesitant to get back on the same merry-go-round that has kept them running hard only to end up where they started.
We wonder how we will fit into a changed landscape pockmarked by COVID, racial inequity, and the Looney Tunes antics of immature politicians. Americans have always been a hungry bunch — ambitious and always pressing onward, only now we’re asking whether “back to normal” and “better” share the same values. To understand this important question, we need to slow down, get off the merry-go-round and stay off until we become more mindful of the direction our life is headed.
Accidental lives happen all the time. They’re not what we planned but who can say that the path not taken would have been better? Often we don’t put as much thought into who we are becoming as human beings as we do in the purchase of a new car. At least car dealerships have spreadsheets and value tables that allow us to make informed decisions on our purchases.
Life doesn’t come with a list of analytical comparisons.
We need the tools to inform ourselves — about ourselves. One of these tools is the practice of mindfulness because mindfulness is the ability to pay attention. That’s it. It’s simply being aware of what’s happening as it’s happening. It’s not one more thing to add to an already busy day because mindfulness is a specific way of living.
Unlike meditation, you can practice mindfulness anytime, anywhere, and with anyone because it’s being actively involved in an activity with all your senses. Whereas meditation is usually practiced for a specific amount of time in a particular place, mindfulness can be applied to any situation throughout the day.
What is one of the reasons that mindfulness works? It can change your brain and the way you think! It can show you how to become a better person, not just a…