MS, mindfulness and me (2)

Why mindfulness is helpful for everything and to everyone

Mindfulness has its roots in (zen-)buddhism, from the eastern part of the western world. It’s about the attention to being here and now. That seems a logical thing. Doesn’t it?

Past, future, plans and policy

But how does attention to being here and now, comply with things like planning and policies? PLanning and policies are  important, aren’t they? The western world became dominant by making and realizing plans and policies. We always talk about the future and about opportunities. We always worry about what the future could bring. What westerners forget, is that beside the good plans that are made, there are always worries, group-wise and individual. We worry all the time, about what could happen to us in the future, about things that could happen to our loved ones.

 

Is it wrong?

Mindfulness teaches us to bring attention to what’s here and now. Is it wrong to dream and think about past or future? No, it’s not wrong. It’s human.We people do it all the time. But it helps to discover where our thoughts go. And it helps us to bring our attention back to our experience here and now.

Test your attention

  • Where are you now? 
  • How do you feel?
  • What’s in your mind?
  • What do you experience in your body and in your mind, here and now?

Give attention to your breath. Where ever  you are, your breath is there too (Jon Kabat Zinn). And that is how it works. Our breath is always there, her and now.

How does mindfulness help an ms-patient?

I can tell you that the first thought after discovering ms was for me: the future. ‘How can I keep caring for my family and my household?’ ‘Can I stay at work?’ ‘How will my partner cope with it?’ ‘When do I have to sit in a wheelchair?’ After that kind of thoughts the memories came: ‘Perhaps MS was already there for me 13 years ago.’ ‘Were those experiences from five years ago also symptoms of MS?’

Mindfulness helps me to feel and experience MS right here and now. I could try to ignore it and I know that this is not possible. I can also try to make it bigger and I know that it would not help me. Sometimes I hate it, with my whole heart. I am never happy with it. I just try to be with it as much as I can. That’s what mindfulness teaches me. That ’s how it helps me. I have MS and I try to be mindful with it. That’ll do.

Over iljas

Ilja Aussems is mijn naam. Ik ben specialist in "een goed gesprek met" Ik blog er elke week over, met mijn opleiding als communicatie-wetenschapper en mijn werkervaring als docent / trainer en adviseur bij de hand. Ik begeleid professionals die willen groeien in hun werk en/of privé. Ik ben jouw bruggenbouwer, train en begeleid je bij een goed gesprek met jezelf en met je doelgroep in je werk (klanten / cliënten, leerlingen, collega's, netwerk) en privé (jezelf, je relatie, je gezin).
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