The practice of mindfulness asks us to notice and allow. Each moment is an opportunity to notice what’s here, allowing it to be here without changing anything, pushing away or avoiding. It is important because it can help us to see what is really here. Things will change, emotions will come and go, but when we step back, we open space to identify what is important to us and what we need for our own care.
In our last Mindful Dads Meeting, I offered three questions:
- What brings you here?
- What do you need for your care?
- What is your intention?
You don’t need to be sitting with a group to reflect on these questions. You might even try it out now:
This post is the sixth in a series that offers teachings to support a mindful practice and lifestyle. They are based on gatherings of Mindful Dads Meeting but offer universal wisdom suitable for anyone.
The best time to meditate? Now! if this very second won’t do, we can support you in your practice. We are online every Sunday at 9pm and Tuesday at 8:30pm at www.center4selfcare.com/meditate4selfcare. In the coming weeks, we have mens fire circles and dads groups suitable for all experience levels.
Suffering = Pain * Resistance
There are so many motivations that bring us to mindful practice. We may be stuck in regrets of the past or fearful of challenges in the future. Oftentimes, our attempt to control our circumstances leaves us worse for the wear. When we hold on too tight, we get rope burn.
The formula above reminds us that we can feel pain, unpleasant and negative emotions, but still experience joy and contentment. It is only when we resist and react that the pain is literally multiplied into suffering. We can incline ourselves towards joy by allowing for our emotions, holding them lightly and letting them come and go on their own time.
As we discussed in our group, I offered two conditions for joy. It’s as simple as when
- people pay attention to us
- we receive a message that says, “I’m here for you and I care about you”
Interestingly, we can often these gifts to ourselves through self-compassion and self-care. We can bring our attention inward and treat ourselves with love and forgiveness. In the practice below, we use an awareness of the body to find meaning and purpose in our experience.