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What Mindfulness Is and What it Isn't

Updated: Jan 30


There are many misconceptions people have when it comes to mindfulness.Is it just for monks and can it only be practiced sitting cross-legged?

With a basic understanding of how our mind works, we can move on to defining what mindfulness is, and just as importantly, what it is not. It is all too common that when we come across advertisements for mindfulness and meditation, we see an attractive person wearing a yoga outfit, sitting cross-legged on a mat with their eyes closed, peacefully facing an ocean, mountain or other serene landscape. This depiction leads to the conclusion that to engage in meditate ion,we must look and dress a certain way, while also being in nature.

Of course,situating oneself in a non-urban environment with minimal distractions can be extremely helpful. However, the reality is that most of our waking moments are spent in a busy office surrounded by colleagues, with a schedule packed with daily meetings, phone calls and tasks.Afterward, we are stuck in an hour-plus commute via car or public transportation, and the moment we get home the family responsibilities await. If we spend more than half of our waking life in work-related responsibilities and personal obligations, who has time to sit in front of a mountain to meditate? Fortunately, mindfulness is much more accessible than how it is depicted in advertisements.

Mindfulness isn't just about sitting cross-legged on a yoga mat with your eyes closed, clearing your mind of all thoughts.No one needs to sit in a cross-legged position at all. Many people I come across at corporate workshops don't have the flexibility to sit in such a posit ion, or they simply can't because of their required business attire. For most of my sessions,I have people sit in chairs, and make cushions and yoga mats available for those who prefer the floor.


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