We hear a lot about mindfulness, and we all say we want to be more mindful. But what is mindfulness?
To me, mindfulness means being focused in a calm way, with your awareness dedicated to one thing. Mindfulness is different from meditation in that it’s active, rather than sitting and trying to quiet our thoughts. We usually refer to doing something mindfully, or being more mindful throughout our days.
And why do we want to try to be more mindful? Because mindfulness is a tool to slow down. When we’re being mindful, we no longer feel like life is a blur passing us by. Mindfulness allows us to appreciate the value of what we’re doing, even if it’s something seemingly small or inconsequential. That, in turn, helps us appreciate all the moments of our lives. Our overstimulated brains get a rest. And we usually produce something far better than if we were multitasking.
One of the things that helps me be more mindful is drawing. I have always loved to draw, even though at times I’ve had a complicated relationship with the idea of “art”! I decided not to make too big a deal about making art, and now I just draw. Mindfulness helped me with that. Instead of thinking about what or how I was drawing, I let my awareness rest on the feel of the pen or pencil moving across the paper, and the marks I was making. Drawing became a wonderful practice in mindfulness.
#MindfulMarch is a 30-day mindfulness challenge based on the 30-day Yoga Mind program, but this time, with drawing! It’s a new collaboration with Sktchy, the iTunes drawing app. You don’t have to be an artist, or have a bunch of fancy art tools, or have gone to art school, to participate. All you is the Sktchy app and something to draw with. You can do anything from detailed illustrations in a sketchbook to a quick little sketch on a Post-It.
Drawing is a quick, simple meditation that will help clear your mind and show you how to be more mindful throughout your day. Join me on Sktchy for #MindfulMarch, starting this Friday, March 1!