Everyone, no matter age, nationality, educational level, economical situation etc should have as one of their goals in life to be more self-aware and more conscious of their thought process. Your own mind is not a black box located 1,000 miles away that requires a team of experts for analysis. You’re inside the box: there are light switches, you can flip them and get a pretty good understanding of what’s in the box just by observing the gears and levers as they click and whirr.
This is called “mindfulness”: by learning to self-observe, where you sit and watch your thoughts go past, and notice your feelings that are associated with those thoughts, you can begin to get some clarity about how your own mind works. An interesting thing happens: you see patterns, you begin to understand motivations, you see self-deception going on, you notice the kinds of thoughts that get suppressed or avoided, and so forth. With time and steady effort, you can crack the code of your own identity — you can learn how your mind “constructs” you with thinking and reaction, images and feelings. You’re not some static thing inside your head that is there from birth, you’re more like a process which is put together and maintained by a machine which has certain rules of operation and priorities. More specifically, being mindful doesn’t mean only be alert, it’s carefully paying attention to your environment and being aware of your surroundings and your actions or emotions towards them. Ofcourse, learning to be mindful is a neverstopping journey and it cannot just be achieved in a day. We are humans and we are flawed, no matter what feelings will sometimes control us and we have to accept that.
So, how does one become mindful? The first step I would suggest is learning more things about spirituality and mindfulness (they are closely related) by reading books or watching Youtube videos on that topic. Then, a big step towards mindfulness is practicing meditation-even if its 10 mins a day-. Meditation is not thinking about anything while focusing on your breath process. It has been proven that if practiced often it can reduce stress, improve your sleep and prevent more serious health issues. Lastly, a general step that must be taken is stopping to ask yourself questions like “Why am I feeling like this?”, “How should I react to this?”, “What would the best version of my self do?” and so on.
Taking everything into account, if you pay attention to the present moment; your present thoughts and the world around you can improve your mental well being. Stop dwelling on your past, and stop worrying about the future. It’s a great skill to have that can help you root better relationships with people and most importantly with yourself.
Author: Margarita Mouka