Tag Archives: simple disciplines

Thought for Today

Copyright 2015 by R.A. Robbins
Copyright 2015 by R.A. Robbins
“In this moment, there is plenty of time. In this moment, you are precisely as you should be. In this moment, there is infinite possibility. (17)” — Victoria Moran, Younger by the Day: 365 Ways to Rejuvenate Your Body and Revitalize Your Spirit

Thought for Today

Yellow and Pink Iris Stem Copyright 2015 by R.A. Robbins
Yellow and Pink Iris Stem
Copyright 2015 by R.A. Robbins

“Mindfulness practice means that we commit fully in each moment to be present; inviting ourselves to interface with this moment in full awareness, with the intention to embody as best we can an orientation of calmness, mindfulness, and equanimity right here and right now.” 

— Jon Kabat-Zinn, Wherever You Go, There You Are:  Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life

Thought for Today

Copyright 2015 by R.A. Robbins
Copyright 2015 by R.A. Robbins

“Mindfulness is simply being aware of what is happening right now without wishing it were different; enjoying the pleasant without holding on when it changes (which it will); being with the unpleasant without fearing it will always be this way (which it won’t).” – James Baraz

A Simple Discipline: Mindfulness

Jon Kabat-Zin PhD is  a scientist, writer, and meditation teacher who works toward bringing mindfulness into mainstream medicine and society.  He defines mindfulness as “paying attention in a particular way; On purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally.”  As I was preparing for this month I read a number of definitions of mindfulness, but this is my favorite for it’s simplicity and straightforwardness.  This is not something that should be difficult to understand, now actually putting it into practice in our modern world is another matter.

Let’s Break down this definition, shall we?

  1.  Paying attention.  I think paying attention may be becoming a lost art.  We are so focused on multi-tasking and getting everything done that we may miss important details.  Paying attention requires focus.
  2.  On purpose.  This is something you decide to do.  You commit to paying attention and observing the present moment in a non-judgmental way.
  3.  In the present moment.  Right now.  That means not thinking about what you had or dinner last night, or worrying about that work project that is due tomorrow, or even wondering if you are being in the present moment in the right way.
  4.  Non-judgmentally.  I think this is the hard one.  How often do we allow life to happen without making some sort of judgment about it?

I think the easiest way to begin practicing mindfulness is a meditation where you observe your breathing.   Pay attention to the air coming in…. and going out.  Of course your mind will wander, just bring your attention back to your breath.  Remember we are not judging, so don’t beat yourself up for wandering off, the mind just does that.  Later this month we will have a video with a mindfulness of breathing meditation.

Of course this can be applied to more than just breathing.  Think about how much better time with your family could be if you paid attention, on purpose, in the present moment  and non-judgmentally when you were with them?  Eating, walking, watching the sunrise, all become richer experiences if practiced in this way.

Yes, you will find this concept in Buddhism, don’t get all tripped up over that.  Yes, I have greatly simplified it, but this is a tool and a practice that is much-needed in our world right now.  Enjoy exploring mindfulness with me this month.

A Few Simple Disciplines

Copyright 2015 by R.A. Robbins
Copyright 2015 by R.A. Robbins
“Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practiced every day.”  — Jim Rohn
I was looking for a good way to start the new year when I happened onto this quote.   Most of us tend to over complicate our lives don’t we?  We think we have to do it all and we have to do it now.
Maybe it’s time to get back to the basics.  At the beginning of this year instead of setting resolutions that will soon be forgotten, let’s think about how life would be different if we focused on just one simple discipline and actually practiced it every day?
This year  we will focus on  simple disciplines.  Every month I will highlight one simple discipline through a blog post and quotes.  Chose one or two to implement in your life and see how things change.
Blessings to everyone as we begin another new year.