Mind Full or Mindfulness?
Its 3pm the week of Memorial Day. I took an unscheduled vacation day and I was enjoying the emptiness of time when that nagging chirp from my phone sung out breaking my solace and immediately setting off waves of restlessness and worry. It was an invite for a Friday 9am meeting from someone I didn’t know but knew was important. Ok, check the attendee list. Rats, its just my department. Holy crap, I thought we were integrated into a new department? What should I do? If I was there I would be involved in the cubicle aisle chatter rumor mill and know. Shyte, let me see if Heather is online I can ask her what this is about. Ring, ring, no answer…she has been offline for 3 hours! WTF!! She is always there. Let me call her desk…no answer! Oh God, I just wanted one day to myself to do nothing and now my whole department is getting the ax! Think Karra, think, it’s probably nothing major. Wait, isn’t all bad news delivered on Friday for safety reasons? Oh, to hell with this! I should just quit life this adulting thing is too much.
Those were my emotions and relentless anxiety talking to me, all from a calendar invite. I went into work the next day to find out that my thoughts though irrational in nature were some what valid as other were concerned about the mysterious invite but to the degree of it ruining my night of emptiness, no. It wasn’t until I left work and began walking that I looked up to the clouds and took a deep breath. Well, several and I remembered my director told me about mindfulness. I had seen a few articles and buzz words, but it wasn’t until that moment of trying to cope with a ball of twisted internal angst that what he said resonated with me. I laughed as I wanted to walk back to work and tell him “Hey, I get it now! Mindfulness is about staying present and appreciating the moment one is in and not allowing yourself to worry or be consumed by thoughts of what if’s!” I wrote this instead as that might seem a little off with all the change going on at work. But is it? Change and uncertainty is the perfect time to practice mindfulness.
Mindfulness according to Psychology Today is:
- Letting go of taking things for granted
- Return to the present moment
- The self-regulation of attention with an attitude of curiosity, openness, and acceptance
I chuckled again to myself and began to see the clouds move. I honestly forgot how peaceful watching cloud formations can be. In the moment when I would normally hyperventilate and reach for a chill pill I instead walked and stared up at the sky. It was a beautifully clear day and the sun was beating on my skin and I chased my shadow all the way up to the hill until my mind had forgotten all about work. That was my moment of mindfulness. I couldn’t get back the previous night or the time I spent at work worrying about the calendar invite. But at that very moment I was present with myself, the flowers in bloom, the construction workers whom seem to have been in the same spot for months, the sounds from the cars and buses humming like bees and the quietness in my mind!