Mindfulness; Why I’m Hoping It’s Not Just A Trend

For the past month, I’ve spent my time reading two books focused on something the blogging community is obsessed with; mindfulness.

Mindfulness is officially defined as ‘a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.’ Basically a long-winded way of saying slowing down, and really listening to your body and mind.

Mindfulness seems to have taken over the blogging community (and the rest of the world) over the last year or two; and to be quite honest I really do welcome this. I think it’s wonderful and a really positive development, which I hope takes an actual place in people’s lives, rather than just a passing trend.

I think the reason it’s become more and more popular, is because of just how saturated our lives are becoming with the digital, and how much busier we seem to be getting. I know from personal experience how damn hard it is to simply switch off. Even if I take time off, I get seriously anxious about not doing anything. Did you know I actually can’t watch a movie anymore without doing something else? I mean.. that’s kinda bad isn’t it? I HAVE to be tweeting.. or colouring… or painting my nails.. anything! I can’t just sit still and focus on one thing.

So if you ask me to just sit and focus on my own thoughts, it’s almost impossible. I know how good it is for me in those rare times I do switch off (usually when having a nice bubble bath, because I’m too scared to read/use my phone in fear of dropping in the water). I always feel so much more in tune with my thoughts, and it’s like my mind slows down for a little while, which I desperately need. ASMR videos help me too, but I still wouldn’t say I’ve found my own ‘perfect’ technique towards mindfulness.

With the help of Ruby Wax’s new book ‘A Mindfulness Guide For The Frazzled’ and Chris Barez-Brown’s ‘Wake Up!’ – I am learning new tips and techniques though, and I truly think I’m getting a little better at it. Ruby Wax is known for her sharp wit and blunt humour; and this comes across fabulously in this book. She shares her own thoughts, feelings and experiences on mindfulness, with tips that get straight to the point. She’s a no nonsense woman who always screams of energy; and yet still shows how you can apply her techniques in real life situations. Which is great for me, because trying to meditate usually ends up with me going asleep.

Brown’s ‘Wake Up’ is similar in that it’s all about truly getting in touch with your own thoughts and feelings. Yet his book focuses on getting out of our ‘Autopilot’ mode that we seem to be on most of the time. You know the feeling, right? You could be taking a journey, hanging out with your other half, or working; and you’ll basically be on autopilot. Going through the motions without really paying attention. It happens sometimes, and it means we’re not living out lives to the fullest. ‘Wake Up!’ is an amazing read which I thoroughly recommend, as it gives playful tips and handy suggestions as to the best way to really experience each moment. Brown gives you experiments to try, mini adventures to take, and new ways of doing the same old tasks. After reading this, one of the first things I did was clear out my wardrobe and make a list of my most worn/favourite outfits. This is because one of his chapters talks about how we can spend too much time focusing on what to wear each day, when we can use this time to talk to loved ones before work, to go for a morning walk, or take a little more time to do something enjoyable. It made me realise how annoyed I can get just looking for an outfit some days, and I realised how pointless that was. I’ll talk more about this soon in another post, but there are definitely a whole load of real life tasks featured in this book that I found SO helpful.

 

I hope mindfulness isn’t a trend, because I know it’s going to take me a while to truly conquer it. A lifetime maybe, and I need all the help I can get. I love that more and more people are focusing on the present, their own mind, and real inner happiness. I can only see this as a good thing, and I hope it continues!

What do you guys think?

lovej


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  • girl untitled

    I love this post! I am SO thrilled that mindfulness is becoming more widespread, because it is such a valuable asset to have in life. It’s made a huge difference in mine. I personally don’t think it will fade as a trend…Once it is applied to your life, it’s hard to move backwards from it I think. Let’s hope! 🙂

    Also–SO excited to check out these two books! They sound fascinating. Thanks for sharing!

  • I really love this post! And I find myself having to do something else rather than focussing on watching something! With autopilot too! ‘Specially autopilot driving to and from familiar places! I hope it will continue also, because I need to start practising mindfulness more often! These books sound brill so will definitely have to read them! X

    Victoria | VictoriaaHelenn

  • I am loving this post! And I love mindfulness. I discovered it years ago taking a “course” in it and I was so shocked of how much it helped me, also how easy it was once you did it. So now I make sure I have some mindfulness time every day since it helps my anxiety so much. Even if it’s just 5-10 min it helps 🙂

    xo Kitten ♥ The Howling WolfHeart

  • I think everyone could do with a little mindfulness nowadays, especially as there’s so much more pressure on every day life! Watching a film and not doing something else drives me crazy too haha x

    Everything But The Kitchen

  • I think people are also more keen on the idea of mindfulness because of our depleting attention span; we become so used to always being busy and chasing after things that it’s an alien feeling to just take a step back and have a proper look at what’s happening. I’m definitely going to be working hard on this this year – I was so burnt out last year after trying to juggle loads of projects at once, and this year I want to take it easy.

    Lizzie Bee // hellolizziebee.com

  • I’m awful, I take my phone in the bath!! I rarely switch off if I’m honest, I really must learn to so I don’t burn out!! xx
    Holly ∣ Closingwinter

  • I understand you so so well!! With the movie example, like I thought I was the only one but I don’t know why is so hard for me to focus on that. I’ve been trying mindfulness with meditation and I think is working well so far.. I’ll definitly give the books you recommened a chance 🙂

    http://www.blossomikebana.com

  • Erin Russell

    I find it hard to control my thoughts, so to see someone else struggle with the same thing is a relief, and you have me wanting Ruby Wax’s book now, I would love to embrace it all – I need to focus more on my mental health – it isn’t something that should be overlooked, and I am all for mindfulness staying around too! 🙂

    Erin || MakeErinOver

  • I definitely understand how hard it can be to switch off or focusing on one thing at a time. I used to watch videos while getting ready for bed because I felt like I needed some background noise. These past few days I started to change my mindset and with it some of my habits though – I’m trying to really focus on the task I’m doing and I also started taking the time to stretch every morning without any other distractions 🙂 It’s actually helping me a lot to start off the day right x

    Sara’sChapters

  • I totally agree! I remember when I first learnt about mindfulness, a few years ago in therapy, and it wasn’t such a big thing now. But more and more books are being published, bloggers and others are embracing it and I love it. I think we all live such fast paced lives, where we’re trying to juggle too many balls. It’s so important to take some time to really live, after all you only live once! I’ve got both of these books on my To-Read pile for feb! x http://www.aimeeraindropwrites.co.uk x

  • Mindfulness is something I really need to concentrate on. I can’t seem to just watch a program without picking up my phone, or just sit and read a book without scrolling through Facebook every few pages. And what’s worse it actually makes me really angry with myself but then I STILL do it! Sense not made! I’ll have to check out the books and see if they can help me focus a little more!

    Sarah 🙂

    Saloca in Wonderland

  • I’ve been trying to get into the whole mindfulness thing for a while now, I think its such a good thing to practise!

    Lucy | Forever September