Mindfulness is a simple philosophy of cause and effect. Circumstance comes from action, which comes from thought – and the goal of mindfulness is to reconnect us with the “thought” part of this process.
So if the effect is distraction or frustration, we should revisit the cause of such thoughts in the first place – and mindfulness practice reveals two basic questions that help us get there.
One – What is the first thing you think about in the morning?
Two – What is the last thing on your mind at night?
No matter what the response, there are really only two major categories your answers fall under:
One – Thoughts driven by positivity and happiness.
Two – Thoughts driven by negativity and unhappiness.
So while we can’t control each day’s uncertainties by “thinking good thoughts,” we can control our daily outlook – by choosing to set a good tone for ourselves each morning, or by closing each day on a note of thankfulness.
Here is a great meditation on mindfulness and transitions from Don Miguel Ruiz, Jr., the author of Living a Life of Awareness:
Practice: Take a minute to reflect on what you woke up thinking about this morning. Remember that you are an artist. Are your thoughts the art you want to starting and ending each day with? Before you go to bed tonight, fill yourself up with thoughts of what you are grateful for, what you love about your life, and what you are excited about for tomorrow.
Be happier and more hopeful in all transitions, and let your thoughts be what makes each morning and evening special for you.