As I've mentioned in previous posts, I'm a yoga therapist. I have been teaching mindfulness for several years to my students and also practicing it personally. I found tremendous benefits from learning what it even meant to be in the present moment. I've also learned to notice how often I wasn't in the present moment. I felt like mindfulness was a light, shining into my life and allowing me to make conscious choices to change instead of being clueless.
Now don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that if you don't practice mindfulness then you are clueless. What I'm trying to convey is that for me personally, I saw a major difference in my reactions, stressors, and triggers, when I could see WHY I was doing what I was doing. Even the times when I couldn't figure out the why, the ability to mindfully observe myself slowed me down and sometimes even stopped my old patterns of reactivity. Basically, I started to see small yet powerful changes in myself, my actions, and even in my beliefs. I began questioning my thoughts instead of believing all of them, especially the negative ones. I took a harder look at my strong emotions when they seemed a little too intense for the current situation. The practice of mindfulness has truly changed my life.
I am a very emotional and sensitive person. I FEEL everything. Until mindfulness, this was very difficult to manage. I struggled immensly with depression and anxiety because I felt so much, but didn't know what to do with my feelings. I was a stuffer. I felt deeply and then I shut my feelings down. We all have a story and are all in a process. Even though mine has been difficult at times, I'm thankful for what I've learned along the way. Mindfulness to me was a tool to bring me back to balance and back to myself. It allowed me to separate my emotions from the real me. I had to learn that I am not my emotions, that they are just a part of me.
I am still learning to change old habits. Mindfulness is not about being perfect, it's about seeing clearly and having the space to choose differently. This is why mindfulness is so important to me personally. I'd love to hear how mindfulness has made a difference in your life! Please leave a comment below.