Mindfulness

In the hurry rush of modern parenting, we often forget to be mindful or present. Even when the hectic day calms down, I’ve been known to block out others (sorry wife) and pay more attention to my phone or my computer. Not being mindful is a bad habit, and it’s one that is hard to lose.

The problem with not being fully present is that we are living vicarious lives instead of our own. Whether those lives be on the internet as blog posts in our reader feed, on the TV with the latest episode of Big Brother, or in our heads as jumbled anxious thoughts, we aren’t connecting with the ones we love the most.

It’s easy to get distracted.

Meditation is a great way to center yourself, but I rarely do it. I’d like to teach my daughters how to meditate. They could probably use a lesson or two in impulse control.

It’s also good to be aware of your own emotions and distractions. I’ve been preoccupied mentally and emotionally with the stress of changes that will soon happen, like my five year old going into kindergarten in two weeks. Time to relax and center myself.

Most importantly, mindfulness doesn’t happen unless you make an effort to let go. So, I’m going to start by purposefully leaving my phone at home today. I know that I will instinctively grab for it, and at those times, I will remember that I’m not being present.

6 Responses to Mindfulness

  1. I’m curious-bordering on concerned-at the spread of “mindfulness” over various concepts and disciplines. There’s mindful eating and mindful exercise and mindful parenting and mindful emotions and …

    It may be sourced in legitimate scientific discourse, but it’s becoming a pop cult.

  2. Ticktock says:

    There’s certainly potential for mindfulness to become the next “secret”. Any idea that becomes popular enough can be turned into an infomercial. But, we must be “mindful” that we don’t become concerned about an idea simply because of it’s sudden ubiquity, right? :)

  3. Lexi says:

    I am also a little curious about this whole mindfulness thing I keep hearing about. I tried to read The Mindful Brain by Daniel J. Siegel last year, but didn’t have time, with the new baby and all. So much for being mindful. I’m wondering if you’ve read it, or have any further insight, as a fellow skeptic? I’ve read articles about how meditation and teaching mindfulness can help kids developmentally, but I’m afraid my BS detector is a little broken when it comes to social science research or things that are abstract.

    • philosodad says:

      We would like to find a “mindfullness” expert to interview, but we want someone to present this in a scientific context. Our interview with Dr. Christine Carter was a bit too short to really get into detail on this.

      • Ticktock says:

        I have my sights set on the dude from the video. He’s written two books on mindful parenting, and he’s affiliated with Greater Good Institute, a very science-oriented organization.

  4. Chris says:

    Jon Kabat Zinn might be someone to check out. He has a mindfulness center at UMass.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jon_Kabat-Zinn

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