Mindfulness…it’s not what you think it is. Some people attribute mindfulness meditation to a Middle Eastern religion, but it is not a “religion” nor is the act of mindfulness reserved to one particular religion or group. Mindfulness is as simple as being aware of yourself and your ability to be present in the moment. During this time of awareness and self-reflection, you can pray or meditate on the positive energy in your life, such as the abundance of blessings you have been given by God. Being mindful and fully aware of the present moment allows you to decrease the distractions around you. This includes the negative self-defeating thoughts that enter your mind. When you make a conscious decision to pay attention to what is actually going in the present, not the past or future, just right now, then you will increase your self-awareness.
The Mindfulness that I am speaking of is based on Biblical principles. King David sat before the Lord. His example of being mindful of his role in the journey of his faith gives us a clear picture of how God can speak to us through His word when our minds are quite. “Be still and know that I AM GOD” found in Psalm 46:10, tells us that our Heavenly Father wants to spend time with us without interruptions or distractions, in order to surround us with His love, peace and to reveal His perfect will for our life. So, the next time you feel afraid or overwhelmed, be mindful of the peace that you can find being still and focused on the present moment, because the present is really all that we have in the grand scheme of time.
Basics of Mindfulness :
- Being aware of the moment and paying close attention by being present.
- Willingness to experience your thoughts and feelings.
- Not judging your thoughts and feelings.
Preparing your “Meditation Space”:
Make sure the place you select is comfortable and create your surrounding that address all five senses. You want to look forward to spending time in this area of your home, whether it is inside your house or on the back patio.
- Include visual items to decorate your space, such as your favorite painting or beautiful plants. Essential oils (peppermint, lavender, or lemon) help in calming the mind. Relaxation CD’s and mobile apps are effective in the process. A soft pillow or blanket can offer a tactile benefit. Drinking a cold beverage or hot cup of coffee can refresh and renew your sense of self.
- Taking a deep breath in through your nose and exhaling the breath through your mouth is a technique that you can use to stay focused on the present moment. Being aware of your breathing helps you to focus on your thoughts and feelings, giving them permission to pass through without holding on or evaluating them. If you become distracted by your thoughts, focus on bringing your attention back to the present.
- Read God’s Word.
- Repeat the next day.
Wendy McNeal, LCSW
This article is for the purpose of educating and inspiring the reader. It does not claim to offer counseling to the reader. Wendy McNeal, is the owner and therapist of Oasis Counseling & Consulting in Paris, Texas. Visit www.oasis-synergy.com for more information.