There is an old Zen saying, "How you do anything is how you do everything." Do you rush through meals and rush through life without a pause in the present moment? Are you consumed by thoughts of yesterday, "I shouldn't have eaten that chocolate chip cookie. I shouldn't have eaten that cheesecake at the restaurant. How could I let myself gain that weight back!" At other times, are your thoughts focused on planning your future? "I am going to start exercising tomorrow. I am going to start eating healthy tomorrow. When I lose my weight, I will buy new clothes. When I lose my weight, I will have better relationships."
These thoughts exemplify those of us who have weight concerns. We are either obsessing about the past or planning how happy and joyful we will be when the weight is no longer an issue. The here and now slips away and we go through daily routines with little awareness. When this form of "Mindlessness" takes hold, we cannot be fully present for small pleasures and events, even for significant ones.
"Mindfulness" is the antidote to mindlessness. It is a philosophy as well as a meditation practice. It is to pause in the present moment and be in the moment. It is about experienceing each moment of your life both the good and the bad. It is feeling the sadness and the sorrow as well as the joy. It is paying attention nonjudgementally. As a result, you will have greater awareness and appreciation for what life has to offer. You will feel true joy to greater depths. You will be more able to take charge of the direction and quality of your life. It will lead you to greater satisfaction, happiness and health.
Mindfulness can be developed by taking time each day to allow ourselves to become fully absorbed and engaged in an activity whether that activity is eating a meal, walking along a beach, washing the dishes, playing with children or creating a work of art. If you would like to learn more about mindfulness and pausing in the present moment, please call me at my office 846-9053 or join us at the Weighty Matters Group.
Mindfulness...pausing in the present moment is an awakening to life. You will enjoy what you are doing more when fully present. And that is why it is called "the present".