In my conversations with people I notice that everyone is looking for one thing: inner peace. Many of us are chasing money, relationships, status, success, etc. but when I ask why they want this or that it always comes down to the goal: inner peace. Sometimes people will think is freedom (especially when it comes to money) but beyond freedom is inner peace. It is innate in us to seek balance and inner peace. What if we could achieve inner peace despite not having yet achieve that which we are looking for? Is it possible? I say Yes! How? Mindfulness.
I am a driven and pragmatic individual who likes to achieve her dreams and goals. I say this because people often feel that if they are mindful or if they meditate, they may lose focus and not achieve their dreams and life goals. I have found the opposite. Mindfulness has allowed me to pursue what my heart really wants with confidence because mindfulness invites me to pay attention to what is important in my life.
Mindfulness, is described by Jon Kabat Zinn as “awareness, cultivated by paying attention in a sustained and particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.” When you are mindful, you are living in the present moment with gratitude and not relieving the past and not worrying about the future.
Mindfulness is one of many forms of meditations. Mindfulness meditation can act as healing from the inside out. When we meditate, mindfully, we are rejuvenating and healing our physical body. We can clear our mind and give space to our creative intelligence to come forward. It also allows us to stay grounded while the outside world continues to speed on. When we meditate mindfully, we can fully experience the present moment.
Mindfulness builds resilience with gentleness to overcome life challenges. It invites us to cultivate patience, trust, wisdom, and a non-judging attitude. The most forgiving aspect of mindfulness is that it can be done formally and informally, no one can say “I don’t have time.” Because you can do it moment by moment as you live your busy life. For example, you can be mindful while breathing, walking, cooking, driving, exercising, eating, showering, interacting with others, etc. There is nothing in our lives where mindfulness could not be used.
Mindfulness is not difficult to learn, by the contrary is very simple. What is challenging is to apply it with consistency. You can begin with a simple mindfulness meditation from Thich Nhat Hanh: “I breathe in love, I breath out peace.” Do that simple mindful meditation as you focus your attention on your breathing, and you will notice that in about 5 minutes you will beginning to experience inner peace. You can also use it if you are having a hard time falling asleep.
Mindfulness works wonderful for children, teenagers, and adults. Children take on mindfulness very naturally. Mindfulness can help children and teenagers to slow down, to focus on the present moment and to appreciate the simple things in life. Practicing mindfulness meditation can strengthen family bonding and enhance the quality of your relationships with your children. In addition, children and teenagers will benefit from making mindful choices with caring and compassion for themselves and others. With mindfulness, children and teens become more aware of what they are doing, and it can inspire them to make healthier choices.
Inner peace is always inside us, mindfulness invites us to shed the layers that are covering it. May you experience inner peace every day.