I recently participated in a thirty-one day Mindfulness Summit, and a handful of presenters were my favorites, including Shamash. I liked his easy-going style and humor and I also just like saying his name. He, like most of the summit speakers, has taught mindfulness for many years and has a book on the subject. While I’ve never cared for the title of this book series, I did enjoy his Mindfulness for Dummies and will share some of his mindfulness tips.
Healthy & Helpful Attitude
Shamash tells us that attitude is an important part of mindfulness and that attitude is a choice. Being aware on the attitudes we bring to life – whether it’s marriage or parenting or our work or practicing mindfulness – can affect the outcome in so many situations. We all know people who seem to have a sour outlook on life. Life is not fair. No one has it as hard as I do. Nothing will ever change. Nobody understands. Why do bad things always happen to me? No one likes me. They seem eternally stuck in unhelpful attitudes.
Shamash identifies these helpful attitudes that are the foundation for a healthy life:
- Acceptance – not giving up but allowing thoughts, feelings, sensations to exist without resistance
- Patience – listen more than you talk, choose the closest rather than the shortest line
- Seeing afresh – try looking at common things with new eyes – what have you missed?
- Trust – believing that both joys and challenges are temporary/ to be expected helps build trust that things are okay
- Curiosity – ask lots of questions about thoughts/feelings/sensations “I wonder what this is about?”
- Letting go – First realize what you’re holding onto. Doing so helps to let it go.
- Developing kindness – non-judgment of self and others
- Appreciating Heartfulness – pay attention to whatever brings you warmth and happiness
- Gratitude – even if not perfect, acknowledge the good there is to your life
- Forgiveness – for self and others – acknowledge being human and that we all are imperfect
Now imagine the opposite attitude of some or all of the above. Identify which of these attitudes you might need a little work on. See if it makes a difference.