Hundreds of books, articles and study results are published about Mindfulness and its benefits; experts explain Mindfulness in detail as a heightened state of awareness and consciousness when relating to experiences, senses and thoughts. Dr. Jon Kabat-Zin, the founder of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Program describes Mindfulness like this:
“Mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way, on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally,”
My personal understanding of Mindfulness simply is a mind that is full. Full of what? you may ask. Full of the present moment with all that is in it including what the body is involved with. This state and level of awareness is critical to the health of our choices. Awareness of the present moment includes information received through all senses and not just the mind and or the eyes. Knowledge of the full scope of information helps inform our choices. For example, one of our dedicated mindfulness practitioners was expressing agitation about some relationships she’s been having for a long time. Once we looked at her agitation as her body informing her, her perspective changed from having to endure or live with her agitation as the only available choice to simply being informed. Once she could identify her agitation and frustration as information, she felt relieved of feeling stuck in pain with no clear choice.The mind is continually telling us what’s going on, making us believe that everything floating through the mind is accurate. However, the mind is only one of the six sense and it should not be relied on completely as if it were really aware and fully informed, unless we practice mindfulness to create such state of mind.
A Mindful person when completing a task, sitting at a meeting, discussing an issue, planning for an event, or watching the news, is aware of all that impacts his/her choices including preconceived judgments, expectations, fear/anxiety, hope and all other feelings and emotions that arise. Through this level of awareness and observation stressors that impact his/her mind may be identified, leading to clearer picture of what is at the core important to their choices. Dr. Chopra explains, from an infinite number of choices available to us at any given moment, there is but only one best choice that would bring success and well-being to all involved.
So, I ask the reader, Isn’t choice making a constant task in our lives and work? Choosing best strategies, choosing partnerships, choosing products & services, choosing our clothing, choosing to delay drinking water, choosing what time to wake up, choosing what news programs to watch and choosing to wait to give love are only some of these choices. Every moment of our day is involved in a choice! Choosing not to make a choice is a choice. Therefore, it is critical to be aware of what impacts our mind, our feelings, and our body, which essentially impact our choices.
Being able to connect our experiences to our choices without judgment, regret, blame or arrogance is key to clearly seeing the one best choice available to us at every given moment or at least for important decisions in our lives. Practicing Mindfulness is most important for leaders and managers as their power to impact the world, themselves and other human beings is immense.
We at Unite In Vision practice and promote Mindfulness in order to realize our Vision, “Connecting Leaders to A Greater Vision of GLOBAL SUCCESS and Leading Emotionally Healthy Organizations.”Dr. Manijeh Motaghy