“I don’t need mindfulness”
As a young man in the early 20s, I never thought I would ever care about mindfulness and meditation, forget about implementing it in my life. And why would I? I was surviving anyway, I too had friends like everyone else, I too went to college like everyone else and I too had trouble understanding love and relationships like everyone else.
And isn’t mindfulness for people who aspire to sit under a Bodhi tree and devote their entire life to meditation? Well, that’s what I thought. A few years down the lane, here I am. No, I haven’t changed, I am still the same person with more learnings, more degrees and more people in my life but there is a major difference between how I see life now and how I used to see life back then. I am living now and not just surviving.
And this is what mindfulness does. It doesn’t help you forget your past, It doesn’t help you earn millions and be famous, it doesn’t help in getting rid of your emotions, it just makes you aware of all those things.
Consider mindfulness in relationships for instance. A lot of people continue to choose toxic relationships over healthy ones because they are so much habituated into following their patterns that even the most toxic things seem like the right and the only choice for them. They can never accept the notion that they too are capable of being loved. What’s the way out? Just understanding. When you understand what’s happening in your mind, what patterns are you following, you would easily make the choices that are right and healthy for you. Mindfulness helps you do that.
A simple and very easy to use method to do that is the “RAIN” practice. R stands for “recognize”, A stands for “Accept”, I stands for “Investigate” and N stands for “Non-Identification”. In this technique, you just have to recognize what’s happening with you, Accept the emotion and the impulse that comes along with it, Investigate where is it coming from, which patterns or your past are bringing that up and the most important thing is Non- Identification. You must be able to detach yourself from the situation and see it from a third person’s perspective.
This technique does wonder in understanding and being mindful about our lives, our relationships, and our careers as well.
And this is just the crux of what mindfulness has to offer.