Slow down. Breathe. Be present. This simple mantra provides considerable health benefits.
When getting ready for a recent road trip to visit my family I chaffed at the thought of eight hours listening to the same music on my ipod. After scrounging itunes looking for new music, nothing caught my ear, I decided to forgo music and listen to a book. But which book? After much deliberation, I settled on 10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That…by Dan Harris, ABC correspondent/anchor.
I was familiar with the book and the subject matter fascinated me enough that I thought it would make a good read (or listen). A $26 download later, I was ready to get 10% happier. Pardon me in advance if I misstated any information. The downside of an audio book is that you can’t bookmark passages to reference later.
These four aspects of the book resonated with me.
- He tells an engaging personal and professional story providing a glimpse into the world of network news reporting.
- He speaks of being conscious and checking in with our bodies. Specifically, recognizing the sensation of breathing, the deliberation of walking, and the emptying of our minds (if even for a short period of time).
- He dispelled the myth that being mindful will dull your edge or your commitment to professional success.
- He posits the best chance of making changes toward happiness is in degrees (10% to be exact).
In my book, Amplify Your Career and Life, I explore my own experience with mindfulness which is much less extensive than his weeklong retreat of silence. I meditate nightly, slow down to focus on one thing at a time and am present to experience life fully.
Finding a little time for mindfulness each day will go along toward increased personal satisfaction.