Mindfulness just means bringing awareness to what we’re doing when we’re doing it and to what we’re feeling when we’re feeling it. Sounds easy, but hard in practice. But for those who practice mindfulness, life becomes more full, more alive and deeply joyful.
However in our day to day lives we generally lack attention.
Has it happened to you that you go into a room to get something but then forgot what you actually wanted to get?
You go online to specifically search for something but then get instantly distracted with what all you see and forget what you actually went to search.
There is constantly so many things going around and so many things inside our heads that its challenging to be mindful.
I struggle with mindfulness so much. I think we all do. But if there is something that helps me bring mindfulness in doing certain things, I have noticed that it is thankfulness. And I want to incorporate more of it into my daily life.
Hence today I want to share about this recent learning- why thankfulness is mindfulness and how we can practice mindfulness with thankfulness.
Why we lack mindfulness
Table of Contents
Firstly, why do we lack mindfulness?
Looking into my own shortcomings with mindfulness I think we lack mindfulness because we don’t give importance to things.
The truth is we always give our full attention to the things which we consider important.
We would never lack attention and awareness when we are signing an important document or giving an important exam. We would never lack attention to how we’re feeling when we’ve had a fight with our loved one. They are important to us.
But in our daily lives we tend to think ‘what is there to give attention to? Its not like i’m doing anything incredibly important’ or worse, we don’t think of it at all.
We can watch netflix as we eat, we can use our phones while we talk, we can log in to social media as we wake up, we can lie in bed all day. Its nothing important.
And so its not important that we’re eating our food, that we had a wonderful sleep, that we’re drinking our tea, going out for a walk, talking with our parents, and also the fact that we’re breathing and we woke up to another day. They just become menial things- taken for granted things. And just like that, the present moment slips away.
We’re constantly waiting for the more important things to happen in our lives to start living more fully. But if we’re constantly waiting for the important things to give our attention to, then we’ll miss out on life for it is in these little ordinary things that life actually happens.
It is in how we live the ordinary moments of our lives that defines who we are and what kind of life we will live.
How thankfulness helps
Mindfulness is showing our respect to the present moment, it is to give importance to the present moment. It is to acknowledge the presence of what is happening around us, to us and within us.
And isn’t thankfulness the same?
When we are thankful, we are automatically giving our importance to things. When we are thankful, we are acknowledging its presence and thus it automatically makes us mindful.
Mindfulness and thankfulness go hand in hand. When we are thankful, we’re mindful and when we’re mindful, we’re thankful.
Thankfulness is mindfulness and mindfulness is thankfulness. They cannot happen separately.
So if you find mindfulness difficult or wondering if you’re actually being mindful or not, just focus on being thankful.
When you wake up in the morning
and are thankful for a wonderful sleep
and say thank you for a new day to reap,
you are mindful
When you’re washing the dishes
and are thankful for the water,
for the plates,
and for the food you just ate,
you are mindful.
When you’re out on a walk
and are thankful for your legs,
for your strength and for the breaths you take,
you are mindful.
I find mindfulness easier when I’m focusing on thankfulness.
What if we started giving importance to all the little everyday acts? First starting with some little every day acts and then slowly sprinkling gratitude to more and more things like in washing our feet, driving our car, drinking our tea, putting on makeup and all sorts of things.
Instead of considering them as menial tasks, we can use them to practice thankfulness and in turn practice mindfulness. How deeply joyful our lives would be.
I totally want to do this but also not to forget that this too is a practice, hence we must be kind to ourselves. But let us try to give importance and bring thankfulness to as many things as we can and let us see how our life changes.
I wish you a wonderful week ahead
Thank you! 🙂