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Moody Musings: The importance of practicing Mindfulness

Every month, I try to set goals. It helps me reflect and recognize growth within myself, even if it’s just from a four-week span. For the month of March, I decided that I wanted to focus on mindfulness.

I told myself that in March, I want to focus on appreciating the moments and the people who are present in those moments. I also want to cherish the situation I am currently in because it may be necessary preparation for my ultimate goals. Here’s why I’m doing this.

Google describes mindfulness as “a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations used as a therapeutic technique.”

As college students, we may encounter days and weeks that feel almost as if we’re just going through the motions. We just want to make it to class, finish our assignments, get the grade we desire, try to get some sleep and hopefully be able to do it all over again.

The days move fast, and as a junior, I realize that the years do too. It was just yesterday that I was participating in Bear Beginnings thinking about everything I wanted to do and accomplish at Mercer.

Sometimes that aspirational spirit and my passion that drove it can get pushed aside by my busy schedule and fast-pace life. So this month, I vow to stop and smell the roses.

Practicing mindfulness doesn’t mean you have to cut some things or people out of your life, although those are options. Mindfulness can just be allotting time to be with the people who make you happiest without feeling guilty about it.

Mindfulness can consist of taking a self-care day to focus on reflection and just being proud of yourself for how far you’ve come. Mindfulness may even mean logging off of social media for a while and appreciating the real world and people right in front of you.

When we become more mindful, we can learn to love our right now, and stop giving so much energy to the next opportunity we’re striving for. There are many lessons to be learned from our current situation, and if we’re not mindful, we may miss them.

This attention that we choose to give to the present will help us to remember our why, and maybe time wouldn’t fly by so fast as if we’re going through the motions. We may think more about how we react to someone, what we say to others and how much energy we put into a particular task.

I’m hoping that my efforts in practicing mindfulness will make me a better person to be around, but also help me become more aware of myself and the things I want and truly care about. It’s not too late to make this your month goal too.

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