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Living your life as if it really matters

I love Jon Kabat Zinn’s description of mindfulness as … Living Your Life As If It Really Matters…      and that means really being here for it, with Awareness and with a certain degree of self kindness towards oneself and with an understanding of the deep inter-connectedness of all life and of all being. 

Living your life as if it really matters – Just presence

He stresses that this understanding doesn’t come from the intellect but, from directly connecting with the totality of your being so really just ‘being present’ or really just ‘living fully in the moment’.

Living your life as if it really matters

Living Your Life as if it really matters – Being Here For it

That’s why the best way to practice Mindfulness is to weave it into your everyday life. You don’t even need to close your eyes. Just as often as you remember take a few seconds or minutes to ‘be here now’.

It may be helpful to create some reminders because the remembering is the difficulty. We have been practicing being ‘lost’ in thinking for a long time so it takes awhile to create a new habit. So, here are a few ideas of reminders you could use to cultivate mindfulness throughout your day.

Practical Reminders for Living your life as if it really matters

Traffic lights

Everytime you are stopped, use it as an opportunity to ‘breath’. Just, move all your attention to your breathing and enjoy a few mindful breaths. Notice the sense of spaciousness you create when you stop the commentary in the mind – even briefly.

Standing in a queue

This can be a great chance to check your posture and notice how you are standing? Is your back uplifted and your shoulders down, your heart open, your head up or are you slouched and clenched. What are you embodying? You may choose to make some adjustments and notice the difference this makes to how you feel immediately.

In a conversation

Notice if you are listening and attending to the other person fully? or are you caught up in a story in your head, preparing your answer, distracted by your phone… You can actually listen fully – to the sound / tone of their voice, their body language while having a sense of your own presence –  your feet on the floor, the aliveness in your body.

Eating a meal or having a cup of tea

Why not  taste it? Smell it? Feel the heat of the cup in your hand? Savour the pleasure of eating / drinking / resting.

Living your life as if it really matters

Allow time to do something you love

It’s your one and only life so why not?

… maybe walking in nature, listening to birdsong, feeling the air caressing your skin, seeing colour / texture / light / shade.

or listening to music – not analysing it but REALLY listening with your whole body and heart;

or swimming in the sea and letting yourself feel the cold water as you get in and the way the ocean holds you and lifts you

or whatever else you love

…   and remembering to stay present (in your body / with your breath) moment by moment as much as you can instead of ‘lost’ in the story in your head – thoughts / feelings that try to lead you away and absorb all your attention.

Living your life as if it really matters

Why Mindfulness?

There is a reason why Mindfulness has been practiced for thousands of years, even more than all the benefits to mental and physical health. When we are present and live mindfully, we get out of our heads and into our hearts. We experience life more deeply and begin to see that the small things aren’t small after all. Whether it is the sound of the wind or our child’s laughter, the smell of freshly cut grass or homemade soup, the feel of an embrace or the warmth of the sun…we notice and savour the sublime in the most ordinary moments of each day …. the moments that make up our whole life.

Words cannot express how much your wonderful teaching has enriched my life. I am looking at everything with new eyes and have a huge appreciation for life and living. You truly have a gift in the kind and compassionate manner you deliver your training.”
This blog was written by Joanne O’Malley, Mindfulness at Work.

We offer Corporate Wellbeing Services that support people and organisations to flourish at Work.

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Joanne_large_transparentMindfulness at Work was set up by Joanne O'Malley to provide high quality Mindfulness Training. Research shows Mindfulness is effective to reduce stress, increase self awareness and deal more effectively with the demanding context in which we work and live... >> more


Wonderful! I found the course enabled me to practice, understand mindfulness much better. I only wish it were longer! I have learnt new ways of approaching situations and it b… Read more