Mindfulness enters our everyday conversations in a powerful way. But what does mindfulness really mean?
Mindfulness is self-awareness. It’s noticing and paying attention to thoughts, feelings, behavior, and everything else.
Jon Kabbat-Zinn, PhD has studied mindfulness more than 35 years and is the creator of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). Dr. Kabbat-Zinn says practicing mindfulness is actually a form of meditation, yet you don't have to practice for 20 minutes at a time.
You can be mindful anywhere, anytime, with anyone. Mindfulness and meditation are mirror-like reflections of each other: mindfulness supports and enriches meditation, while meditation nurtures and expands mindfulness. Where mindfulness can be applied to any situation throughout the day, meditation is usually practiced for a specific amount of time.
Mindfulness is simply awareness. It has been defined as a state of moment-to-moment awareness of one's experience without judgment. This requires being aware of and attentive to what’s going on inside and outside of your body. This requires being in the present, not being on “autopilot,” or going through the motions of life without a clear connection to what you’re feeling or doing.