learning to be mindful


You hear much these days about how being mindful, being present, etc. can benefit your health.

But what does learning to be mindful really mean?

If you consult Google by searching “Be mindful” you will get about 55 million results.

It is an individual pursuit much like the Cleanse, Center, Kickstart exercise.

Multi-Tasking is a Myth

It is about being fully engaged in what you are working on, experiencing, or feeling, by doing your best to “uni-task”.
What is “uni-tasking” in a world of constant multi-tasking?

First, let me explain why multi-tasking is a myth.

Nobody does this well. What you are really doing is splitting your attention between several activities – which means you are not giving any of them your full attention. Your brain is amazingly powerful and can split attention to work on multiple tasks simultaneously, but something will suffer – and that something is the quality of the work or the quality and richness of the experience.

Uni-Tasking and Productivity

Uni-tasking” on the other hand is focusing on a singular action or activity with undivided attention, and then moving on to your next task or moment.

This is not only the most productive way to chunk out your work but is also essential to (re)connecting with the world in front of you – a lost art with so many people wrapped up in their “digital lives”.

Have you ever gone out to dinner and everyone is constantly checking their phones? How was the experience? Was it as enjoyable and memorable as it should have been?

Have you ever hastily eaten a meal in front of your computer while answering emails and phone calls? How did you feel afterward?

Details will be missed, your connections with the person in front of you will be shallower, fond memories will not be generated and placed in the “long-term storage” compartment of your brain, and your health will actually suffer as a result.

Most importantly, to not be mindful is to miss the essence of life – to focus on what you have in that moment, for other moments are not guaranteed.

So the concept of being mindful is really quite simple.

The action of being mindful can be anything but simple.

With practice, being mindful will improve the quality of the experiences you have each day, and allow you to spend more time focusing on what really matters.

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