14. Practicing Mindfulness in Daily Life

Meditations on the Natural World; Find the Technique That's Right for You Section III. Meditation Techniques That Have Withstood the Test of Time
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Transcript

Lesson 14, mindfulness in daily life. Mindfulness is moment to moment awareness, focusing on what you're doing. And trying to keep your mind from wandering is purposefully paying attention to things we normally never give a moment's thought to, and often do while multitasking. The fact is, multitasking is not as productive as we think. Our brains aren't equipped for multitasking tasks that require brainpower. Our short term memories can only store between five and nine things at once.

When you're trying to accomplish two dissimilar tasks, each one requiring some level of consideration and attention. multitasking is counterproductive. When you multitask, you actually don't work. Faster, your stress levels soar. You're limiting your short term memory and creativity is fine for simple tasks. I can dust and talk on the phone with the best of them.

But multitasking isn't effective for serious work. But coming back to mindfulness, how often do we Daydream? Or let our minds wander while doing an everyday task, such as washing the dishes? What if we didn't let our minds wander, but rather focused on the task at hand, clearing the mind of all of the thoughts that would indeed be profoundly restful and relaxing. Earlier I mentioned practicing mindfulness while eating an apple. In addition to eating or washing the dishes, while can mindfully sweep the floor, make the bed, prepare a meal, listen to music, or eat a meal.

To mindfully eat an apple do only the following without multitasking. stay aware of your breathing your inhales and exhales throughout. Select an apple. Watch it, dry it, look at it and give it your undivided attention. What kind of Apple is it? Where did it grow?

What color is it? What is it shape and size? How does it feel in your hand? What does it smell like? Take a bite and chew. What sound does it make as YouTube?

What does it feel like in your mouth? chew slowly and savor the task and the taste. As you become fully aware of eating the apple you become fully aware of the present moment you become more alive. That is practicing mindfulness. In the wind is my mother, there are teachers about the Native American tradition of eating in silence without television or conversation. He said, You need to pay attention to your stomach, what you're putting into it, and how you're doing it because your stomach is your biggest health.

It's where the energy that sustains your life enters your body. You think you save a lot of time by working while you eat, but then you don't understand why you feel tired and have such bad indigestion. No wonder so many executives have ulcers. Just focus on the blessing of the food and nourishment you're receiving. visualize it going through your body creating health and well being. That's mindful eating.

There's a PDF bonus to this lesson on the Japanese tea ceremony. It will give you guidance on mindfully preparing a cup of tea. Coffee. The Japanese have made the tea ceremony into an art and it is a prime example of mindfulness. For your homework, practice mindfulness in eating an apple or preparing a cup of tea. Our next lesson will be a mindfulness meditation on a rock.

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