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When I first saw this evolution of mankind graphic,  I was amused – then petrified! It grabbed and held my attention because it so accurately depicts where we’ve been and sadly, where we’re heading.

Ours is a culture that needs to wake up and straighten up – quite literally!
As we strive to be better connected, our high tech lives have us folding into our devices rather than standing up straight, engaging and waking up to the world around us. Our attention bandwidth is stretching far beyond it’s capacity, and as a result, disengagement and distraction abound.

How can we begin to reconnect, re-engage and plug into the parts of our lives that have gone dormant? Mindfulness.
I recognize that the word mindfulness has been bantered about far too freely of late and perhaps you’re beginning to view it as simply a trending phenomenon.

But, let me assure you, mindfulness is no trend. Rather, it’s an ancient wisdom practice and recently scientifically-accepted method of waking up, cultivating attention, sharpening awareness and yes, connecting more authentically and compassionately to your self and others.

Even as you read these words, your mind is likely wandering to places far and wide (rehashing the past, rehearsing the future). No problem, your fractured attention is “normal” and simply a by-product of your multi-tasking life.

The need to hone our skills in the area of present-moment awareness has come to Main Street, but is nothing new, as expressed eloquently by William James in 1890 (The Principles of Psychology – Chapter on Attention), wherein he stated,

“The faculty of voluntarily bringing back a wandering attention, over and over again, is the very root of judgment, character, and will… An education which should improve this faculty would be the education par excellence.”  — William James, 1890
We really should have received this style of education (higher learning, if you will) earlier in our lives. These skills may have served us well as we scratched out and carved our life paths. No worries though, as it’s never too late to teach whatever age dog you may be now…new tricks.

There are many options when it comes to mindful awareness training. One or more of them may be the right fit for you!

Please help me change the trajectory of our Evolution of (Wo)mankind graphic by joining the mindful movement and choosing to (re)CONNECT with mindful awareness.

Check out the following options.

Live training programs:

MindYourMoments.com

id8TE Mindful Performance

1440 Multiversity

Digital Mindfulness:

Whil

Calm

When I first saw this evolution of man graphic,  I was amused – then petrified! It grabbed and held my attention because it so accurately depicts where we’ve been and sadly, where we’re heading.

Ours is a culture that needs to wake up and straighten up – quite literally!

As we strive to be better connected, our high tech lives have us folding into our devices rather than standing up straight and engaging in the world around us. As our attention bandwidth  stretches far beyond the corners of it’s capacity, disengagement and distraction abound.

How can we begin to reconnect, re-engage and plug into the parts of our lives that have gone dormant? Mindfulness.

I realize that the word mindfulness has been bantered about far too freely of late and perhaps you’re beginning to view it as simply a trending phenomenon.

But, let me assure you, mindfulness is no trend. Rather, it’s an ancient and recently scientifically-accepted practice of waking up awareness, cultivating attention, sharpening focus and yes, connecting more authentically to self and others.

Even as you read these words, your mind is likely wandering to places far and wide (rehashing the past, rehearsing the future). As you’ll see, the need to hone our skills in the area of present-moment awareness is also nothing new, as expressed very eloquently by William James in 1890 (The Principles of Psychology – Chapter on Attention), wherein he stated,

“The faculty of voluntarily bringing back a wandering attention, over and over again, is the very root of judgment, character, and will… An education which should improve this faculty would be the education par excellence.”  — William James, 1890

We should have received this style of education (higher learning, if you will) earlier in life. These skills may have served us well as we carved our life paths. No worries, as it’s never too late to teach whatever age dog you may be now…new tricks.

Allow me to introduce Mindful U, which makes it’s Fall 2015 debut as a 1-day program/showcase in the SF Bay Area on Friday, November 6 at Stillpath Retreat Center.

Art

The six progressive learning modules of Mindful U are designed to educate, engage and enliven participants from all walks of life by delivering simple tools and tactics that can be implemented and practiced immediately.

One breath and one module at a time will allow you to:

1) Wake Up and Breathe 2) Get In Your Body 3) Come to Your Senses 4) Board the Brain Train 5) Sit With it All, and 6) Plug In and Go!  

I invite you to explore the new paradigm of living a connected life. Join me and The Alternate Path team to create a more Mindful U.

Note: In addition to the full day Mindful U showcase, there’s an option to stay for an extended weekend retreat. For detailed info, please visit www.MindYourMoments.com/mindful-u/ and www.Stillpathretreat.com

You’ve probably done your fair share of changing your mind, but when did you last attempt to change your brain?

It’s time to board the brain train and explore the science of mindfulness meditation and it’s potential to catapult you (and your organization) from good to well…well.

In the recent Harvard Business Review article, Mindfulness Can Literally Change Your Brain, three researchers share powerful findings that may turn the business world right-side-up.

Evidently, “paying attention, non-judgmentally, in the present moment,” can positively impact the toxicity of chronic stress, improve executive functioning and memory, and plays a critical role in self-regulation; the ability to skillfully direct attention and behavior.

In short, gray matter matters!

A study conducted on graduates of an eight-week mindfulness training, using pre and post fMRI scans, revealed increased density in brain substance in two key structures, the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and the hippocampus.

You might consider the healthy function of these structures as internal “peace-makers,” regulating emotional reactivity and resilience.

The ancient practice of mindfulness has thoroughly splashed the modern media and for good reason. A healthy brain is a happy brain. For that alone, there’s no better moment that this one, right now, to take a breath and consider mindful awareness as a new way of life.

 

businesswoman sitting in lotus position on green field

A dear friend recently shared a blog article that got my juices flowing. What at first blush had me defensive, ended up presenting perspectives that I hadn’t previously explored.

This was the line that sent me searching for the comment button:

“No amount of multivitamins, yoga, meditation, sweaty exercise, super-foods or extreme time management, as brilliant as all these things can be, is going to save us from the effects of too much work.”

But honestly, I jumped the gun with my reaction. The author was making some very powerful points:

  • We’re blaming ourselves for not being able to thrive in a culture of overwork
  • Work/life balance is not achievable until we begin to say no to overload
  • We work too much to really be well!

“We’re working longer hours than ever before, and as our employment conditions continue to worsen, they’re simply repackaged into a new version of normal in an effort to make the truly pathological state of many of our workplaces appear acceptable.”

While it may be true that the burgeoning “wellness industry” (of which I am a member) has gotten the attention of corporate America, Zoe Krupka, PhD is correct when she suggests that the internal champions for these “stress reduction programs” may be in fact, a part of the very system that promotes work before life, i.e. stress.

So, how do we, as wellness providers deliver a message of hope?

In my humble opinion, meditation can save us. Meditation isn’t just about learning to live peacefully with the unrest (literally), but rather to empower oneself in a way that only “time in” can do – to promote clarity and the ability to make choices that one may not have previously thought possible.

Of the 81 comments (to date) to Dr. Krupka’s blog post, I get the distinct impression that overworked people are getting tired of hearing the glorified promises that mindfulness boasts and would love an excuse to dismiss them – perhaps because developing mindful awareness just looks like a LOT more work.

In closing I’d like to suggest that first, mindfulness should not be touted as a “fix-it-all” for work/life imbalance, and second, that mindfulness isn’t always pretty. You don’t simply float on clouds and avoid the raw nature of the roller-coaster ride. Instead, you’re invited to LOOK deeply at the reality of what IS and from that perspective, gain a ton of insight and perhaps a new, creative, constructive plan that addresses the imbalance head-on.

I invite you to read the whole blog article and let me know your thoughts:

https://theconversation.com/no-its-not-you-why-wellness-isnt-the-answer-to-overwork-42124

Be well, for now~!

Cassie