Best Mindfulness Teacher…

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In a previous post, I spoke about being present and living in the now as a means to fix feelings of frustration. Sometimes it’s not easy to do that because the whole goal of frustration is to rattle you enough to make you forget all the things you know in theory you should be doing. Like being present. And mindful.

Ellen Langer is a professor of psychology who spent her lifetime studying the benefits of mindfulness, which she defines as an active state of mind where you’re intentionally noticing things. It’s what blogger Neil Pasricha (the guy behind 1000 awesome things) did to come up with his awesome blog posts – he continuously noticed things. He spoke about the three A’s of awesome; the second one of which was awareness. He says, “I love hanging out with three year-olds. I love the way that they see the world, because they’re seeing the world for the first time. Having a sense of awareness is just about embracing your inner three year-old...”

We’re definitely losing that sense of engagement with the world around us as we explore the world at our fingertips. So it’s good to have mementos and reminders to reinforce the idea that we need to slow down, engage with the world around us and take things one step at a time. While others might write down statements on post-it notes and hang them around the house, my favorite anchoring technique is a video I took last October in Mombasa.

Here’s the trick. You must watch it until the end. Do not skip it. Do not forward it. Just keep on watching.

So how did that make you feel? The first time I saw that hippopotamus emerge from the water, I was filled with awe. Its slow walk towards the feeding area made it seem as though it had all the time in the world. It seemed to poke fun at all those people who walked around with pocket watches crying out, “I’m late. I’m late. I’m late.”

And if there’s nothing else it taught me; it taught me to live in the moment, engage with life and just be present.

So yeah, I hope this is a good reminder to slow down your pace in life if your life is very hectic. Remember.

One. Step. At. A. Time.

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