Mum’s the word

View from the ground

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“I’m gonna make a change, for once in my life. It’s gonna feel real good. Gonna make a difference. Gonna make it right.” – Man In The Mirror by Michael Jackson.

Words are good, but unless they are accompanied by actions they can, at times, be worthless. There is a lot of talk on social media about the need for people to make a change and I am not short of desire to change my path. But are we doing it?

Across the globe there are significant decisions that people need to make this year – as a collective. A couple of examples are the presidential election in the USA and the referendum in the UK as to whether to stay in the European Union or whether to go it only and return to being little islanders. The outcome of these events could result in significant change. Maybe, just maybe, sometimes change might not always be a good thing.

So, welcome to the latest view from the ground. It’s taken a bit of time to put this blog together. I started a few weeks ago but it’s not being easy. I’m not sure why as, like a lot of my thinking, the core theme is mindfulness. What? Again! Yes, indeed. There are 2 reasons. 1) It’s a subject I have a true passion for; and 2) The more people I talk to; people who are really struggling with where they are at the moment; the more I truly believe mindfulness is an answer to a lot. Perhaps, it could be said, it is THE answer.

As usual, I’ve been looking at various definitions of mindfulness. Here’s the latest one: –

“Mindfulness is the practice of bringing one’s attention to the internal and external experiences occurring in the present moment, which can be developed through the practice of meditation. The term “mindfulness” is a translation of the Pali-term sati, which is a significant element of some Buddhist traditions.”

Interesting, in that this definition suggests mindfulness can be developed through meditation. I can see that and meditation is a wonderful practice and something I enjoy. However, is it essential in order to achieve a state of mindfulness? Could the thought of meditation – certainly in the first stages of achieving mindfulness – be something that could prevent those who truly NEED to find a state of mindfulness?

I talk to so many people these days who are stressed / anxious / depressed and who struggle to achieve that place of being able to live in the moment, because of events from yesterday or worries about tomorrow. There is no one group of people – it could be men or women who are under considerable and, it could be argued, unreasonable pressure at work, it could be teenagers under considerable and, there’s no argument about this, unreasonable pressure to achieve at school or college. There are a whole range of situations that cause us to struggle with what life throws at us.

This all got me thinking. Think back to your childhood. Who would you turn to when you were struggling, or upset about something. Mum! Those of us lucky enough to have a loving, caring mum always knew she was there. Mum’s definitely the word.

And then, that got my thinking about linking our reliance on mum when we were young, or maybe not so young, and on achieving that state of mindfulness – on achieving a state of living in the present. On always having a trigger, when we are feeling low or vulnerable.

Make Use (of) Mindfulness – MUM.

To be fair, this started out as being called My Understanding (of) Mindfulness. As I’ve talked about above, I’ve looked at a lot of definitions of mindfulness. Ultimately, they are other people’s definitions. This should be about what mindfulness means to you and how you can use it to help you. How you can live for today, to live in the present moment without feeling the pressures of what happened yesterday and without worrying about what you think might happen tomorrow.

Now, those who know me will look with some scepticism about me talking about not getting wound up about what happened yesterday and not worrying about what might happen tomorrow. However, I would question whether those same people actually know me. Whether they know the battle that I am winning in my personal plight to use mindfulness in its full glory to focus on living for today. That is why I write these blogs, to share my experiences and to hopefully help others realise that they are not on their own.

It’s now 11 1/2 years since I accepted that my state of stress and anxiety was an illness and needed to be fixed. I have spent too long worrying about events from years previous and how they could be repeated in future. Basically, not living in the moment. I will talk about this in more, candid, depth in the View From The Ground book. The book now has a name ‘Round The Bend Or Turning The Corner’. The book has 64,000 words. I just need my balcony in Spain to create the final version of the magic.

Ultimately, we all need to decide on how mindfulness works best for us on an individual level and then to share that learning with others.

But, when we are struggling with yesterday or worrying about tomorrow – we should Make Use (of) Mindfulness. Mum’s the word.

To close, as with the start, in the words of Michael Jackson, “Stand Up and lift yourself, now! ………………. Make that change”.

I hope this blog has helped. I dedicate it to all of those people who have just found things a little tough, a little overwhelming. When you struggle, it’s not because you are weak, it’s because something needs fixing. Keep strong, keep believing, and focus in living in the glorious moment of right now.

Take care. If you want to share your thoughts, please contact me through jonlduke@icloud.com.
Jon

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