Mindfulness on holiday

The word sounds alien and has long been forgotten, along with its meaning. Mindfulness is a state of mind one has to adopt consciously. It is a willingness to see, feel and behave in a certain way. It sounds so easy, but is difficult to achieve. 

 

Mindfulness means a wakefulness,  leaving things as they are, being aware of them, but not trying to change anything, not trying to achieve anything, just being there, open and present. Not wanting anything, only perceiving. This appears impossible for our hyperactive minds, which are constantly on the go, always going back and forth between the future and the past, flitting away from the present. 

 

Stopping all activity and being in touch with the present moment and what is all around us can be a great challenge. Thousands of thoughts and holiday expectations invade us and want to monopolise our attention. If a quiet and tranquil moment does come along, it is overloaded with thoughts, experiences, the planning of new activities. And then the inevitable happens: life and holidays rush past and slip through our fingers, in a constant frenzy of activity, losing all sense of oneself, without any depth of feeling. When the day is over, one doesn't know what one has experienced. There is a constant feeling of tension.

 

Mindfulness enables us to step outside of this state of permanent activity. It has to be learnt, not on a three-week course, but through lifelong practice. The rewards are great. Those who live within the present moment start to worry less. The body is always in the present, and mindfulness prevents our spirit from wandering off into the past and the present.

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