The psychologists are saying that stress is on the rise. We are more stressed now than we were during the war years and for most of us, most of the time there is no need to be. One way to overcome stress is daily meditation practice and another way is Mindfulness.
For me Mindfulness is this: Knowing i am only one person and i only have one pair of hands and therefore no matter how much i need to get done, I can only do one thing at once.
This site – http://bemindful.co.uk/mbsr/test/ – will allow you to take a stress test and at the end there is a 5 minute clip to watch, watch it and listen to what is being said about stress. The test is free, but there is a course you can take, which you have to pay for, but the stress test is worth doing. I scored 23 out of 40, it would be interesting to come back to this site in six months, after practicing mindfulness for that time and see if my score it lower?
I am very bad at ‘doing one thing at once’ i didn’t use to be. When i was working and very busy and had to move from one task to the next quickly, i would always pause for a breath before i began the next task and before i walked away to the next one. We cannot always go slow, but we should try and find some time every day to go slow.
If you were a fly on my house wall you would see me being not very mindful at all, as i tend to read and eat, watch a program or film and knit or sew (not too bad), leave dishes in the sink all day, eat in bed, be on the computer and eat, read in the bath, watch a program and play a game on my phone or even read and play a game, leave things half done or not done at all – even simple tasks.
Pause for a moment –
- what do you see – rain drops
- what do you ear – yapping dog
- what do you smell – fresh
- what can you taste – salt
- what do your hands feel like – soft
When we are not mindful we miss the moments.
Two examples – During the graduation ceremony on Thursday for my daughter, i had hold of my granddaughter, Amelia. I was talking quietly to her, when she said ‘I love you’ and gave me a hug.
– Today it is raining. As i sit here i can see the rain gathering on the leaves on the tree outside my room and then gently, quietly, with no speed or rush letting go.
I am creating Habits. I do not like the word habit, it feels too constricting, but habits they nonetheless. I started with meditation in the evenings. With the ‘one step forward, two steps back’ approach of Fibro it has taken me six months to establish that habit in the evenings. I have now begun to establish that habit it the mornings too. I do not find it so easy in the mornings; there is more noise and distraction and the cat wants to join in, but it is easier when i sit on a floor cushion.
The Habit is to – Do things Mindfully – one thing at a time.