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Capable of Happiness: Mindfulness

By Gillian Pietrowski

Columns Editor

To be mindful is to be mentally present and focused on what is going on around you in the moment. Many people, like myself, don’t stop to appreciate the in-between moments; we are too mentally checked- out to stop and smell the roses.

Recently I have been trying to be more conscious of where I am, what I am doing and what I am feeling, either physically or emotionally. I get very anxious and worked up about what I am going to do with my life and where I will be in five years, when in reality that doesn’t matter unless I am here in the now.

All I want to do is work at my dream job and not get ready to start school again. This causes me to stress out and go into panic mode. When I get like this all I have to do is stop and be mindful.

Take a second to look around – where are you? Is anyone with you? Is it loud? Are you sitting or standing? If you’re outside, is it cold? Become aware of what you are feeling physically, the textures and the temperature around you. What do you smell? Do you hear anything?

Focus on this mentality. Are you happy with your surroundings? How does the feature of what is in your hands make you feel emotionally? Become aware of your five senses.

Practicing mindfulness allows you to take your running thoughts and focus them on what is going on in your current environment. You can practice being mindful of your body, which can help you move around more. If you are exercising be mindful of your body getting stronger. Bringing awareness to these things can help you better yourself.

Overall being mindful can help with your every- day life. It keeps you focused on your goals without overwhelming you with what is to come. It allows you to notice and appreciate what is going on around you in the present. Take yourself out of autopilot and don’t let life pass you by.

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