To me mindfulness is not necessarily being kind to one another or minding one’s business. I see mindfulness as being present in the moment. It is thinking about the future but not longing on what is to come. The example I gave the other day was about going on a trip and enjoying the trip instead of worrying about traffic or the item you forgot back home, or if it is going to be too warm or cold, or worrying about the long lines. There are the little moments in our lives that we miss because we are too worries about the big picture instead of the small details.
Here is how I see Mindfulness playing out in my life this year:
- Plan ahead/Setting Goals: I think we do a pretty good job in planning ahead. We sit down and plan out when I am going to take time off and what we are going to do with our time off. However there are still things that we need to plan ahead for and be specific about the details. If I want to live in the moment I need to feel comfortable that everything is taken care of to the best of our ability before I can let my mind rest. Instead of planning a month or two ahead, perhaps we need to look at 5-6 months ahead in order to make things are really taken care of.
- Pick up a hobby: I have had lots of hobbies over the years, I have drawn cartoons, collected baseball cards, played a variety of instruments, and played sports just to name a few. It seems the last 6 or 7 years of my life that has gone away. One of the biggest factors in that is having a few kids and going to graduate school and now being a pastor. However, now that we are settled in one place for awhile I would like to pick a hobby or two back up. I think in doing this I will be more relaxed in my life and able to not only enjoy my life but excel.
It is not about the quantity of time that I spend on a project or with my family, it is the quality. It is possible for me to sit in the same room with my kids the whole day and not interact with one another. They could be watching TV or playing with their toys and I could be working on the laptop or watching TV myself. I don’t want that to happen, I want to be interacting with my kids, and my wife. I want us to remember the good times that we have with one another, I want to laugh with them and show them how much I love them. This is what I mean by being mindful.
- Plan Ahead/Setting Goals: I know I have this listed in the personal section as well but I think it is important for me to use this as a goal professionally as well. I would like to stay ahead at least one liturgical season when it comes to worship planning. I think that way I will be more present in the current season instead of worrying about what will come next. Also I want to set goals for myself professionally so I know what I want/need to be working on in my development as a pastor.
- Actively searching for God Moments: Like I mentioned yesterday, I want/need to be searching for God moments in my life. Being mindful as to how God works in my life will be an amazing thing for me and I believe change my life personally as well as professionally. I want to find a way to share these God moments with the important people in my life. I believe this blog is one way as well as on Twitter and Facebook.
When I think about this word more and more I believe that it is leading me towards a direction of preparedness in my life personally and professionally so I can take a break and see God around me. The more I can do that the more I think I can be mindful in all that I do.
Can you help me think of other things I can do in my personal or professional life when it comes to Mindfulness?