“They live in a state of ceaseless frenzy, thinking they should be doing something more than they are doing in the moment.” —William James
Mindfulness can be simply defined as the cultivation of nonjudgmental moment-to-moment awareness. It is a simple, secular practice which aims to ground the practitioner in the moment by using sensations in the body, such as the breath or sounds, as an anchor to the here and now. This allows the stream of constant distracting thoughts, feelings, or emotions to take less “center stage” enabling us to engage and handle stress or difficult emotions like anger when they inevitably arise.
Mindfulness can be cultivated formally or informally. Formally, it can be built by sitting down for a period of time each day to meditate (for example, by bringing attention to the breath or other body based sensations), and informally by bringing more present moment awareness to our day-to-day activities, such as eating, driving, and communicating.
When one learns how to bring attention to the present moment, the constant stream of distractions—physical sensations, thoughts, emotions— become less tenacious, allowing a more direct experience of reality to bloom. This can give the meditation practitioner a better understanding of their own patterns of thoughts, emotions, and judgments, as well as help build a deeper ability to listen, communicate needs, and be present with others.
Below are three short, guided meditations I did in partnership with the meditation app Stop, Breathe, Think. I hope they are benificial.