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Mindfulness Challenges

Honestly, I really am working on not “living in my head” too much. I am improving on this, but I am undoing years of conditioned thought patterns. Some would call this stream of incessant, unconscious thinking the “ego.” It is thinking without conscious awareness of your thoughts.
So, this is kinda funny and a great example of how I need to work to liberate myself from this unconscious chatter that goes on in my head. Mind you, most of this is pretty innocuous (e.g., I wonder what would be good for lunch today) and often fairly positive (e.g., For this next client, I really need to talk to her about…). Now, there’s a time in place for everything, and certainly there are times for these types of thoughts. However, too much thinking pulls us away from the power of the present moment…thinking instead of being. Learning how to be present (i.e., mindful) is critical because that helps us to connect to others and the world around us. Also, negative thoughts hold no power over us when we are fully present…because we are Being and outside the current of unconscious negative thoughts.
Anyway, I get kind of enthusiastic about new things, and Eckhart Tolle’s most recent book, A New Earth, really connects with me. In it, he eloquently (although sometimes a bit cerebrally) espouses the importance of being awakened to the present moment. So, I’m taking a shower and thinking of how wonderful the book is and how important being present is. Suddenly, to my dismay, I realize that I have this stream of unconscious thoughts going on in my head about how great being present is!! Aargh…I think to myself. Then I think, “Isn’t this ironic how I’m thinking about how great being Present is and I’m totally not present while taking this shower. Now THAT’S irony.” Then I just realize…Uggh! I did it again! At that point, I stopped thinking of being present, ironies, etc., and just enjoyed the feeling of a warm shower. Finally, I was present.

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