The practice of mindfulness encompasses the idea of living in the present moment and being acutely aware of your surroundings and focusing only on things that matter. This involves taking control of how you view the world through observations of your surroundings. While experiencing emotions through observation of the world is important, practicing mindfulness aids in learning to let go of past emotions. Here are some steps to successfully practicing the art of mindfulness.
Live in the Present
People commonly get so hung up on past events that it negatively affects their present state of being. Being mindful is realizing that there is no changing the past and it is best to intentionally focus on the present. While it is good to reflect on the past to take lessons away from mistakes, it is more important to apply those lessons moving forward.
However, it is equally important to not get caught up in the future. Letting worries about the future affect your feelings or actions at the present time is not an effective way to appreciate the moment. Planning for the future is important, but always remember that the present moment is the most cherished.
It is also important to not hold on tight to positive emotions. Living in the moment does not necessarily mean that the moment is great, as everyone will have bad experiences throughout their lifetime. Appreciate positive moments without fearing their ending and do not compare current positive moments to past joyful events, as the current positivity may be overshadowed.
Make a conscious effort to focus only on things that are positive to think about. While it may be tempting to let your mind wander to the troubles in your life, consciously redirect your thoughts to the present moment and to things you have full control over. Be sure to also pay attention to your actions. Your actions and reactions to situations help to define your character and your reputation, so it is important to be conscious of everything you do and say.
Part of paying attention to your actions is to give them a purpose. Realize and appreciate your reasoning for acting and thinking as you do, and make sure it is constructive and beneficial to your life. Knowing the well-meaning purpose behind every action you take is an important element of mindfulness.
Do Not Pass Judgement
During the practice of mindfulness, you will find that you become well aware of your surroundings and may notice things that you previously would have missed. While observation is crucial, the act of judging what you see is not beneficial to your wellbeing. It is important to be objective when observing situations, realizing that you may not have complete information or you may not have ever been in the shoes of the other person.
Placing blame or looking down on people is not as effective as practicing empathy. If you are well versed at practicing mindfulness, judgments will not occur because you are living fully in the present moment. This means that you are not predicting anyones past or future behaviors.
Do not shun away emotions. Everyone experiences a wide range of emotions, but the important thing to remember is that they are always temporary. Emotions can be unpredictable, and you cannot always control how you feel. For this reason, it is crucial to accept your current emotions, realize they will pass, and not try to hold onto them when it is time to let go.
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