The 411 on Mindfulness

Guest Post by Emily Garbutt, Senior Account Executive

I’m not really sure how mindfulness relates to ethics just yet. I guess I’m still trying to define mindfulness itself. So, here it goes…

The inherent nature of ‘mindfulness’ is not thinking, it’s being…just, being. That’s it. Contrary to popular assumption, it’s not rocket science. It’s simply allowing whatever is to be without judgment, expectation or resistance. It’s acceptance, acknowledgement of the present moment and patience.

MF Garbutt imageWhat I find most intriguing about the concept of mindfulness in general, even just the word itself is that when it’s first introduced, people almost seem to fear it. People (and when I say people I include myself) initially think it’s bogus or some type of hippie voodoo, gypsy crap. We’re speculative of it because it’s foreign to us. There’s nothing wrong with that because it’s somewhat human nature to be apprehensive about things we don’t yet understand. I would argue however, that the fear or speculation we may feel toward mindfulness is the first step in attaining it and more importantly understanding it.

Mindfulness, like life in general, is a journey. It’s a marathon, not a sprint and we’re meant to learn lessons, make mistakes and forgive ourselves throughout the process. I think once we start, we’re forced to continue down the enlightened path because we just can’t help ourselves. It’s like we’re being divinely propelled to absorb all of its lessons.

In yoga, we’re taught to honor ourselves every practice. This, most importantly means, honoring our own physical capabilities to execute certain yoga postures. We’re not supposed to look at our neighbors and say to ourselves, “my warrior one isn’t as good as his, or I can’t do bridge pose like she can”. We’re encouraged to accept where we stand within our own individual practice because it’s exhausting, discouraging, frustrating and downright insane to constantly compare ourselves to others during yoga and more generally, in life itself.

Just as we do in yoga, we must do when practicing and learning about mindfulness. We must honor our own journey without comparison, without judgment. We must freely allow ourselves to be propelled down the enlightened path and absorb the lessons it teaches us along the way.

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