The first time I came across this word- Mindfulness was when I saw this picture and it made a lot of sense.
It was the beginning of my work life as a sport psychologist in India and I was in middle of a career conflict. The conflict was about whether I could sustain in the field or not. Which is when I came across the concept of mindfulness based stress reduction (MBSR). I read a lot about it and found it beneficial personally as well as professionally. I did the 8 week online program just to understand the basis of mindfulness when combined with psychology. The mindfulness meditation practice was impactful. This is when I decided I will learn more about mindfulness and its application in sports as well as in life.
- It is all about living in the present: We dream for the future, we analyse our mistakes in the past so that we do not repeat the same in the future. But we pay little attention to accept and enjoy the present. Mindfulness means living in the present, accepting it and committing to something which will enhance the present moment. Let us take an example of a young tennis player, who says:
“I find it very difficult to focus on where to hit my shot when I am at a crucial point in my match. I think a lot about what will happen if I don’t hit the shot well. Like I know for sure my mom will shout at me and my coach is going to give me a big lecture about how to hit the correct shot. Thinking about all this I don’t feel like playing and I just do what I predicted: hit a terrible shot”
Why do you think all this happens? It is because she is living in the future, she is living in the future worries. But had she focused on the present- how to tackle and hit the shot in the right direction, it would have led her to focus on what she has to do, and not what could happen.
- It is about accepting what is happening with you now. Many believe that if they are in pain or in sadness, what is the point of focusing on the present. It will lead to more sadness and pain. But what they do not realise this focusing on the present is the first step to accepting the fact that it has happened, and that is also the way to find solutions for the pain or the reason for the sadness and how can that be tackled. The acceptance is the key to resolve the present situation. If one does not accept that something has happened to him/ her, it is very difficult to look forward to better times.
- It is about savouring the moment we live in without judging anyone or any situation.
This blog is for the daily sense of mindfulness that we can have in our life, sports, performance, exercise and health.