Creating a life of mindfulness

Courtney Dalton, Courier Staff

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There is something to be said about creating a life that centers around mindfulness.

We have to stop the cycle of wondering why bad things happen in our lives. In the past year, mindfulness has become so important to me when I need to make sense of events in my life and challenges I face. For me, mindfulness comes from my ability to put out positive energy and receive it back. I now try to be mindful about the energies I am accepting into my life, and I do my best to give off the energy I would want to receive.

We all know the people who are stuck and cannot find any joy or happiness in life. We know someone who begins conversations with a deep sigh and a complaint. If you are one of these people, have you ever thought about what it would feel like to make a switch? I’m talking about the difference between waking up with a “screw the world” attitude and a “this is going to be an amazing day and I am grateful for waking up” outlook.

Have you ever noticed how your day transpires based on what you wake up thinking? When I used to wake up angry (and sometimes still do) about my alarm going off, having to wake up early, being cold or whatever, I became bitter. I looked and felt terrible, I didn’t eat right, I avoided moving my body and I certainly didn’t do anything productive that day, and I felt so guilty for that. I was miserable, and I noticed how easy it was to get stuck in a cycle that was detrimental to my mental health.

On the other hand, when I wake up and take a few moments to thank the universe for waking me up, set my intentions for the day and smile before rolling out of bed, my day is much better. Positive things happen to me that day. I feel inspired to take control of my life and do the things I have been putting off or accomplish my plans for the day. I think the simple fact of accepting that my day is going to be what it is and I am only accepting positivity each day sets me up to have a successful mindset.

I realize how ridiculous I sound; how irritating it must be for some of you to read this. I do not mean to avoid or ignore how mental health can stop us from practicing mindfulness and being positive. However, I would make the argument that mental health can be positively influenced by making these small changes, coupled with necessary medications and therapy as well.

So what did I change? I try my darndest to never complain now; I used to be a big complainer. That was how I started a conversation; complaining about something that had happened to me that day. You know what you realize when you stop doing that? You realize how horrible it is to listen to people who constantly only talk about how terrible their lives or days are. Of course your life will continue to be terrible if that’s the only thing you acknowledge about it.

Now, when “bad” things happen to me, I try to think about the lessons I am learning from them. I consider why they happened in the first place. It helps me so much. I am striving to live a life where it is impossible for my days to be ruined by other people or things out of my control. A simple change of mindset is what it will take for me to be more in control of my reactions.

When you love life and acknowledge all of the opportunities that are waiting for you, I promise that life will love you back and reward you. I truly believe that we all have a purpose here in this life, perhaps several. Identify your purpose and what makes you happy. I did that; my purpose is to educate and help others. Once you have identified your broad purposes, you can do something small each and every day to fulfill that purpose. While you are at it, identify your big goals in life.

Everyone needs some kind of direction. We are all so different. But the one thing that has remained true to me is that I get back what I give from this life. If you are not putting out good and pure energy, you will never get that in your life. Treat others the way you want them to treat you. Treat yourself the way you want others to treat you. Put out beautiful work and energy and you will receive it back in infinite amounts.

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