Being Mindful

“Mindfulness is the aware, balanced acceptance of the present experience. It isn’t more complicated than that. It is opening to or receiving the present moment, pleasant or unpleasant, just as it is, without either clinging to it or rejecting it.” -Sylvia Boorstein

What is mindfulness really? I think it’s another word for surrender.

Mindfulness is surrendering our control to the God who is somehow more intricately involved in our lives than we can know.

Mindfulness is choosing not to analyze things to death. It’s choosing to let what is be. It’s choosing to feel the weight of your emotions and, rather than try to change them, to let them exist as they are, knowing they won’t last forever.

You know what the opposite of surrender is? Panic. At least for me.

I can feel the terror rising. I can feel my throat closing.

And under that?
“I can’t do this.”
“This isn’t how life is supposed to feel.”
“I have to make this go away.”

It’s like being under a wool blanket. It’s hot and black and there’s limited oxygen. And I can’t kick my way out from underneath it.

I know there’s a world outside of the blanket. I know there’s light and life and air. I know that exists. But not for me, not right now.

And so I practice radical acceptance. Gratitude. Thought-monitoring.

Mindfulness.

“It’s okay. It’s okay to feel this way.”
“Emotions don’t kill people.”
“Emotions don’t determine truth.”

Am I still under the blanket? Yes. Is it hell? Yes.

But when I surrender, I am inviting God into the hell with me. I am saying, “Here’s where I can’t,” and then trusting Him to meet me in that place.

 

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