Mindful Musings

Written By Gerald Levine MD

Self Compassion

Prior musings have outlined a method of optimizing physical, mental and spiritual health by focusing on self-care and embracing the mindful attitudes of non-judgmental acceptance, patience, curiosity, trust, non-striving and letting go.

This musing will focus on another mindful attitude: kindness. It is the unspoken underpinning of all mindful practice. Infusing kindness into mindful practice gives an essential focus and intent. Lovingkindness is undifferentiated, unconditional good will and love given to others no matter whether they are suffering or at peace.

Many people find it easy to be kind to others and but difficult to be kind to themselves. We are taught at a young age that giving is rewarding,but giving to ourselves in equal measure is somehow selfish.

Read more: Mindful musings of Dr J - Number 19

Mindfulness of Planning and Doing

Prior musings have outlined a way of being that promotes physical, mental and spiritual health by focusing on self-care and embracing the mindful attitudes of kindness,non-judgmental acceptance, patience, curiosity, trust, non-striving,and letting go.  Mindfulness emphasizes paying purposeful attention on the present moment. It is common to wonder how anything gets done or planned if one is focusing on the present moment much of the time.

    Mindfulness can be practiced both formally and as a way of being. Formal practice is choosing to set aside some uninterrupted time to meditate, which can be done sitting,lying down, walking or in many other ways. Informal practice involves being aware as one goes about everyday activities. Awareness of being aware (so-called meta-awareness) helps us pay full attention to whatever activity we are doing. This enriches the experience and may contribute to efficiency,effectiveness,creativity and enjoyment. 

Read more: Mindful musings of Dr J - Number 20

Mindful Time Management

Prior musings have outlined a method of optimizing physical, mental and spiritual health by focusing on self-care and embracing the mindful attitudes of non-judgmental acceptance, patience, curiosity, trust, non-striving,letting go and kindness.

A common concern is that there is no time for stress management or meditation practice in people’s busy lives. Our upbringing and our society reinforce being busy. Unplanned,open downtime is a rarity and can bring on feelings of discomfort or judgments of laziness. We equate our value with being busy and productive.

Read more: Mindful musings of Dr J Number 21