“The more you try to control something, the more it controls you. Free yourself and let things take their natural course.”
We keep hearing that we need to continuously keep reinventing our self and that takes it’s course by being mindful of our existence however I don’t think making changes (daily, hourly, but the minute) to improve yourself would be the same as reinventing – it’s adjusting or improving. In my opinion reinventing is a major overhaul that seems unnecessary on a frequent basis. Mindfulness helps me improve on what works well and allows me to reflect on what may not work well, then choose to adjust either my perception or my reaction. Instead of using “we must reinvent ourselves daily!”, I would change the slogan to “Take time to REDISCOVER yourself daily!“
Let’s now dig in a bit further.
What does Mindfulness really mean? Is it about being aware and if yes how does it help?
Life experiences to start with, definitely guide us in the direction of mindfulness by the influence of our environment comprising of family, friends, colleagues and various forms of people we come across in our lives. Once we go in that direction: we stay with, explore it even more and at the same time become curious or anxious about it while experiencing it with whatever changes it brings to us and that’s when the magic begins.
What mindfulness does is; that it transforms us very slowly but surely. Each one of us is uqiue in some way or the other and there are things we like about ourselves and some that we don’t. The more aware we become about ourselves (i.e. we start becoming mindful of our existence) the more clear answers we start getting for curiosity around WHO ARE WE? WHAT ARE WE DOING? WHAT IS THE BIGGER PICTURE FOR WHAT WE ARE DOING? WHY ARE WE DOING WHAT WE ARE DOING and eventually HOW WE BEHAVE WHILE WE DO WHAT WE’RE DOING. All of these are aspects that often lose their meaning in our fast paced lives.
In my case too, I have noticed that my hardwired behavior patterns still show up as I go about my day – facing different situations and interacting with different individuals. But (and that’s an important but) I notice that I am aware of those patterns and reactions a lot more, and I recover from them a lot faster and better. I am able to do what is necessary, be it making amends or apologizing or just gently making peace and resolving to handle a difficult situation or person differently the next time.
As Marcus Aurelius said – “You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this and you will find strength.”
By being aware we start living better by appreciating the present & not drooling too much into the past and that for me is the biggest outcome of being mindful about your existence. With the ever so increasing pace of our lives it is getting that increasingly difficult to find time for OURSELVES and being MINDFUL helps you to identify that time for yourself in a very simplistic and beautiful way. How does all this help? Well it helps us understand ourselves at a more deeper level when start realizing who we really are and that gives us a sense of fulfillment and joy. Still wondering HOW? Well the more insights your start getting about yourself, you start understand yourself a lot better leading to outcomes that seem unreal to you. This then further steers us in the direction of our purpose (THE BIGGER PICTURE OF LIFE) and aligns our daily acts with what WE ACTUALLY WANT TO BE and what we WANT TO DO. However there’s a catch to this, we’re responsible to a lot of our actions however a host of other actions are something that we DO NOT own. See below:
ONE SIZE DOESN’T FIT ALL and that’s the beauty of mindfulness as each one of us have varied perception about MINDFULNESS. We draw meaning out of it which suits us well and takes us towards the real purpose in our lives.
Being MINDFUL is nothing but a journey and I am aware that I am on this path and continuously evolving where my awareness helps me to see that part of me that justifies my behavior or reaction towards a situation or an incident. I know I am work in progress and I enjoy that fact. I know I am better attuned to my inner voice and appreciate the fact that it is slowly reasoning with the other voices in slowly but gently. Mindfulness helps me practice consistently non-reactive awareness. I strive for more clarity and to be more aware of myself and my environment.
I would end by saying that something inside of us knows what is right for us, and we have to humbly learn to track its voice and align its wisdom with our outer choices. If we’re able to do this, we’re on course to being Mindful.