I am delighted to introduce the first Everyday Mindfulness blog. The aim of this blog is to give the average person chance to talk about mindfulness and how it is having a positive effect on their life. I will constantly be looking for people to contribute to the blog; I will also write occasionally myself. If you ever you want to contribute to the Everyday Mindfulness blog, please get in touch with me firstname.lastname@example.org, and I will share your words with the world.
This first blog is from Hannah Boschen, who is just beginning to walk the path of mindfulness. In her words, I recognise some of the wonder that I felt, when the benefits of mindfulness began to sink in for me. It’s just washing up and listening to the rain I know, but it really is beautiful if you pay really close attention. I am reminded of what the wonderful Thich Nhat Hahn says about mindfulness in that it “helps us fall in love with the ordinary.”
Here are Hannah’s words:
I’m amazed at the impact mindfulness is already having on me, especially as it’s only the second week. It is a whole new way of seeing and more importantly being in the world. I find myself stopping and being mindful, just for a few minutes at a time during seemingly random activities. I was washing up and stopped to really notice the bubbles and the shapes the fairy liquid made, to notice the swirling patterns and colours in the bubbles and how they reflect off the things I’m washing up – they’re difference depending on whether it’s Pyrex or a baking tray. It felt good to stop and notice and be for a while. I’ve realised how much I’m usually doing and thinking about at the same time, all the time. Stopping and focusing on just one thing is tremendously rewarding. I don’t particularly enjoy washing up, it’s just something that needs doing, but when I stopped to think about it mindfully I realised it was a very pleasant, rewarding, peaceful experience. I felt tranquil and at one with the world, something I never expected. I plan to see if ironing can be done in the same way. I expected to find that I’d been washing up for absolutely ages, time seemed to stand still. This is something I’ve noticed with everything related to mindfulness. Time seems to slow down when I’m focusing on only one thing, but in reality it passes at the same speed as usual. I happened to look at my watch and was surprised I’d only been washing up for 10 minutes and yet it felt like much, much longer than that. Being mindful is allowing me to experience life in a new and very different way. I feel as though I have found an inner peace, which in turn has given me strength and a new appreciation for the world around me. I think the world would be a much better place if it was a mindful world.
Listening to the rain
Yesterday I stopped and listened mindfully to the rain. This is not something I’ve ever done before. Stopped and really paid attention to it. I watched it fall on my conservatory roof. I noticed the pattern the water made as the rain got heavier and more intense. I was struck by how beautiful water is and also how powerful and dangerous it can be at the same time. It’s a life-giving force, but also one that can take life away. I focused on some individual rain drops when it eased off enough to allow me to do that. I noticed their shapes, which were in some ways uniform, but in other ways very different. I thought about their texture. I thought about their temperature. I thought about where their journey began, high up in the atmosphere. I thought about what it must be like for them to fall from the sky and land on the ground, or on a roof top, or on a person, animal, or another object. For those few minutes, I felt completely connected to the rain. I wanted to be outside in it, to be with it and to feel it falling on my face and my hands. The doorbell rang at that moment, bringing me back down to earth. My OCADO shopping had arrived.