How to Make Mindfulness a Habit

It’s been a tough couple of months – there’s no getting around that. But I’ve learned a lot from my experiences thus far, and I’m growing and maturing, which is a good sign. I’m sure there’s a lot more in store for me during my final year at Cal. When I say tough, I’m referring to school and jobs, of course. For those who follow my blog (thanks!), seems these two topics are all I’m talking about nowadays.

But at the same time, I know that every other Cal student experiences hardship and shares a lot of the same worries as I do. From a broader perspective, many other people in our society, and the world as a whole, are struggling with much larger things, so I really can’t complain.

Today, I came across a very helpful article titled “How to Make Mindfulness a Habit With Only a Tiny Commitment.” I’d highly recommend it – I really like the viewpoint the writer takes, and his advice on becoming mindful when doing two seemingly mundane tasks (opening a door and sitting down in a chair) really hits home the importance of experiencing and enjoying the present.

And I realized something. This entire semester, I’ve let job recruiting and school consume a lot of my time, energy, and thoughts. I get lost in the past, poring over mistakes, or in the future, imagining how things could be – and I forget to enjoy the present moment, the little things that make life fun, spontaneous, and more meaningful.

Even when I’m hanging out with friends, cheering at a football game, or enjoying a concert, there’s always a tiny voice in the back of my mind, nagging me about recruiting, grades, and my future. While I understand the importance of this voice, I want to truly enjoy the activity I’m doing in itself.

A lot of my personal growth this semester came from learning to let go of things beyond my control. I can try my very best, put in full effort, and do an awesome job. But if something doesn’t work out and it’s beyond my control, I can’t blame myself, I just need to be flexible and roll with the punches.

Another important point I’ve realized is my purpose in life. As a Christian, I believe God has given my life purpose, and I need to trust that some things were and weren’t meant to be. Doesn’t mean that I shouldn’t have motivation – more so the right kind of motivation and always seeing the bigger picture.

My resolution is to be more mindful of the present – after all, I only get to experience undergrad once, so why not make it memorable and meaningful? I’ll make an effort to genuinely enjoy what I’m doing at the moment, and when I need to do work, I’ll do work.

As for recruiting, I’ll continue to give it my best effort and not let it get in the way of enjoying senior year. I’m striving to make mindfulness a habit.

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