What is Mindfulness?by Tameeka Leon
Mindfulness is a way of looking at things differently and allows a way for you to relate to all of the experiences in your life which may be causing you to suffer. This, in turn, will allow you to personally transform yourself.
We as humans are constantly looking for ways to solve the causes of our suffering and then discover how we can alleviate it.
Sooner or later you end up asking yourself questions such as: “Why don’t I feel better?” or “Is there something I can do or something that be prescribed so it makes the pain go away.”
No one wants to be on pills for the rest of their life. As we age (and sometimes throughout your whole life) you can suffer from illness. Sickness, old age, and death usually expose us to pain.
Throughout your life, you can struggle emotionally when you are confronted with adverse circumstances. When you don’t get what you want in life, if you suffer from great loss or have to deal with things you don’t want to deal with you are constantly seeking ways to feel better.
Mindfulness is a 2500-year-old tradition of Buddhist psychology. Mindfulness has to be experienced directly. Mindfulness comes from within because it is intuitive and pre-conceptual.
With practice over time, you can figure out how to become more and more mindful in your everyday life. Mindfulness can help even if you are in the middle of significant suffering. Mindfulness has been compared to a deeply personal journey of discovery.
Mindfulness is meant to bring about awareness, attention, and remembering. Awareness means becoming aware and fully enjoying and appreciating the things around you no matter how small it is.
When you are attentive, it means that you are participating in focused awareness. That means that you are aware of what is occurring within and around you. When you participate in this “awareness” you can begin to free yourself from mental preoccupation and difficult emotions.
The true purpose of mindfulness is to rid yourself of needless suffering. How do you do this? You do this by becoming aware and cultivating insights into how your mind works and the meaning of everything in the material world we live in. You are looking for ways to calm your mind and bring peace to your world.
Through Mindfulness you are re-training your mind in order to manage it. Mindfulness allows you to develop other mental qualities including concentration, loving/kindness, effort, and becoming more alert.
Mindfulness is not an end-all or doorway to happiness but it can provide you with the foundation you need to build those skills.
By allowing yourself to get rid of habits in your mind that can cause you unhappiness the result will be letting go of anger, envy, greed, or other harmful behaviors that serve no purpose.
Mindfulness brings about self-acceptance and self-understanding. We bring upon ourselves unwanted emotional and behavioral problems simply by trying to avoid discomfort and throwing ourselves into some other sort of change-seeking activity.
Mindfulness is about awareness and acceptance first and changes second.