Be. Here. Now.
Three little words of wisdom by dad passed along to me during one of our “D and M’s”. You know — those conversations you have when you need to make a difficult decision. Even though your gut tells you the right thing to do, but you still need the reassurance from someone you know will tell you how it is.
(p.s. “D and M” means “deep and meaningful”…some Australian lingo I picked up last year while I was backpacking).
I’m someone who can get caught up in stress. If you’re a student, I’m sure you can relate. Trying to juggle a full class schedule while juggling some part-time work so you can pay for that coffee you didn’t have time to brew yourself makes having “me” time a challenge. Not to mention getting good enough grades to justify all the $$$ you’re putting towards your education. The struggle for a balanced life can be overwhelming and blur the belief that you have the capacity to achieve what is important to you.
I was at a yoga class earlier this week, and I was reminded of how important mindfulness is. Not just in yoga, and not only in reducing stress, but in bringing yourself back to the present and putting life into perspective. Mindfulness is challenging. It is a conscious practice and often needs to be returned to over and over again. It’s not a state of being you simply achieve. It requires careful attention, maintenance and consistent effort.
I’ve been practicing yoga for more than five years, and I never used to understand why some yogis used to say savasana is the most challenging pose (the lying down pose that starts and ends each class).To be mindful is to be present in every moment. To shut out the noise, the responsibilities, the deadlines, and just be where you are in the present moment — and focus on it.
It’s hard to cater your quiet moments away from the life’s to-do list!
Practicing mindfulness is challenging, but even making the effort to try can remind you of what is important. That’s why we practice. For me, practicing mindfulness helps to calm my stress. I am reminded that whatever it is I’m worrying about will be okay in the end, even if the light at the end of the tunnel isn’t bright enough right now.
Sometimes, being mindful can be painful. But by being mindful in the presence of pain, you are practicing wellness. Wellness is not the absence of pain, but the presence of meaning. To be mindful is to make meaning from pain. By paying attention to it, we can often minimize the power pain can have in our day.
To illustrate, here’s a little anecdote:
Whatever you are doing, be there, in its moment, fully and honestly.