Mindfulness And The Lost Art Of Finding Yourself
Where in the world are you? Right now. Not just where your thoughts are but where you are…
And how long is it since you’ve actually gone in search of yourself?
In the busy-ness of the everyday, we can sometimes feel scattered all over the place by the habit of multi-tasking and the ‘need’ to be in at least two places at once. Sort of being everywhere. And yet nowhere.
And somewhere along the line, maybe you un-learned how to simply be. Right where you are… (So maybe, in a way, you’ve lost touch with yourself).
Instead, perhaps you’ve been sort of projecting your mind or your thoughts out into other spaces – to your workplace; to your hopes; to your obligations and responsibilities; to your worries.
Or perhaps it feels more like you’ve invited those things in? Into your space. Into you.
This is the kind of thing that Jon Kabat-Zinn meant when he suggested that “next time you’re in the shower, check to see who else is in there with you.” For perhaps in getting distracted, or letting your mind wander, you might’ve ended up dragging other people in there with you (at least in a virtual sense) – maybe a challenging family member or work colleague or that person you felt was rude to you recently.
Mindfulness is about simply letting all of that stuff fall away. Letting the thoughts and wishes and distractions and concerns go for a moment or two. Setting them down.
And just experiencing who you are. Where you are. As you are.
It’s about coming back from all those places you might have metaphorically wandered off to. And coming home. To yourself.
Really experiencing your life – as it is – even for just a few minutes a day.
And bringing some curiosity with you…
So that you might find out what that actually means for you.
Find out what your body is noticing.
Find what this moment, this particular time in your life, really feels like.
Or find a space to breathe amid the multi-tasking.
And maybe even find yourself in the process…
Reference: Kabat-Zinn J (2010) Quote taken from a lecture given at Westmead Hospital, Sydney.
Photo: Gabrielle Gawne-Kelnar (Of some amazing street art in St Peters, Sydney)
Gabrielle Gawne-Kelnar (Grad Dip Counselling & Psychotherapy) is a writer, blogger and Sydney psychotherapist in private practice at One Life Counselling & Psychotherapy. Gabrielle also co-facilitates telephone support groups for people who are living with cancer, for their carers, and for people who have been bereaved through a cancer experience. She was the former editor of a journal on counselling and psychotherapy and she provides regular therapeutic updates on facebook and Twitter @OneLifeTherapy.
Gawne-Kelnar, G. (2011). Mindfulness And The Lost Art Of Finding Yourself. Psych Central. Retrieved on April 21, 2015, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/therapist-within/2011/04/mindfulness-and-the-lost-art-of-finding-yourself/