Giving Power to Mindfulness
Whether it is Netflix, a podcast, or the cover of Forbes, Mindfulness has become the buzzword and practice of recent months. Why is Mindfulness a trendy focus of the iGens and Millennials? Diving deeper into the idea of mindfulness will highlight the importance of being intentional with our thinking and action, giving power to the hype.
Mindfulness is the simple act of observing your life as it is happening. Mindfulness is noticing your thoughts, feelings, and actions as they arise during your day. Simply stated, mindfulness is a basic awareness outside of our normal autopilot way of living. With that simplicity, where is the power?
Multiple studies, including an article highlighting a white paper published by Harvard University, have shown that the simple act of mindfulness positively affects concentration, compassion, and resiliency in people. Within education, mindfulness helps individuals understand their current situation, leading to self-acceptance and decreased stress levels in students. In students, mindfulness is the ability to allow feelings to exist without letting them drive your actions. In other words, mindfulness is taking action based on your determination, not an old habit, short term convenience, or succumbing to the easiest path. A student’s ability to observe their life, as it happens, allows them to notice thoughts as they arise without the need to buy into them. The intentional awareness will enable students to observe their current tasks, coursework, and social experiences without judgment. From the lens of a student, the power is accepting where you are while not settling for anything less than what you wanted.
Are you wondering where to begin on your mindfulness journey? As a student, let us begin by realizing that mindfulness is the here and now, wherever you are currently. Are you sitting at a desk reading this blog post? Are you walking, looking down at your phone while reading this blog post? Either situation would require you to STOP and OBSERVE your current action, your thoughts about the action, and the feelings that arise in your body when you observe yourself. When you stop and observe your current situation, you are taking the time to acknowledge the stress, judgment, or distraction that you may not be aware of in the autopilot moment. Once we are aware of the true stress, the real feeling of judgment, or the reoccurring distraction that stops us from being actively present in our life, then we can start to look at the power of mindfulness.
Try this today: Remember to S.T.O.P.
S - STOP. Push pause on what you are doing right now.
T - TAKE a breath and notice your breathing (is it shallow? slow? fast?)
O - OBSERVE notice your thoughts, emotions, and feelings in this moment
P - Plan out how you would like to respond, what thing to focus on, or the immediate priority at this moment.
Anytime we pause or STOP, it requires us to begin again. When we choose to pause, we choose a new beginning with more clarity. In our restart, we can choose how we will react to our situation (or stress) while noticing the details of what lies within us and around us. We can begin to accept our new plan without judgment and struggle because we are no longer focused on the stress; rather, our focus turns toward our plan and goal. Grounding ourselves through this process allows us to intentionally set goals that align with our true purpose. Begin to intentionally set goals and observe the process...you may find yourself mindfully aware of your deeper purpose and aspirations.
CBCR will be offering workshops that use mindfulness with goal setting during the college planning process. Mindfulness as a strategy to reduce test anxiety and essay “writer’s block,” and using mindfulness to investigate our realm of control.
Contact College Bound, Career Ready, LLC for an initial consultation by emailing email@example.com or by utilizing the Contact Us page on our website at http://www.collegeboundcareerready.com.
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