What is Mindfulness?
We each have a human mind, so we each tend to:
Stress about the past – go over and over what we said, did, what someone else said or did, second-guessing ourselves, ruminating.
Worry about the future – planning, worrying about an upcoming meeting, fantasizing, rehearsing conversations
Try to do a million things at once--spinning in different directions, starting and stopping twenty things at once, and feeling unsettled the whole time
Feel agitated, always feeling like – no matter what we are doing – we should be doing something else
Mindfulness is when we are able to pull all of our energy into the present moment, giving us a sense of peace and calm. It doesn't make ANY of the human emotions or feelings or aches and pains go away, but it helps us navigate our way through it all with more ease. Most of us know what that feels like when we are happily engrossed in an activity that forces or somehow allows us to be super present – sports, motorcycling, rock-climbing, art projects. Wouldn't it be nice to feel that "flow" more often? We can actually cultivate that, allowing us to feel more at ease more often, which, of course, can actually start affecting – improving – the overall quality of our lives, rippling out to positively affect the lives of those around us.
A 5-minute explanation by the person most credited for making mindfulness mainstream. Jon Kabat-Zinn is the molecular biologist who created the Stress Reduction Clinic (now the Center for Mindfulness) at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. His 8-week stress reduction class (MBSR) is taught at over 700 hospitals and, increasingly, throughout the country in various community settings.
Mindfulness - 60 Minutes Dec 14, 2014
Anderson Cooper's 12-minute segment from CBS
A full-page of CBS coverage of Mindfulness