Oxford Languages defines mindfulness as "a mental state achieved by focusing one's awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique."
People are the most mindful without putting much thought and effort when they were kids, myself included. As kids, when we fall we don't stay down, we brush it off, move forward and the next day we forget about it - it's a beautiful mindset to have. Unfortunately, as we grow and let the modern world consume us (ex. overstimulated by social media, comparing ourselves to others, living too much in the past) is when our mindfulness begins to slowly diminish until it is replaced with anxiety, insecurity, worry and more that takes us further away from experiencing the present to the fullest.
The silver lining is that achieving mindfulness is not impossible as an adult. I remember re-learning the concept of being mindful through meditation practices (after being reminded by so many people until I desperately needed to practice it), feeling my body and bringing awareness to my emotions without reacting negatively, that it was within me all along, and I only forgot.
Along my journey to re-learning mindfulness I read some incredibly insightful books that I would love to share with you to make your mindfulness journey all the more easier.
These forms of mindfulness combine health and wellness, spirituality, psychology and poetry:
1. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
I admire Eckhart Tolle for writing this chapter book with great comprehendible detail because he was able to explain the unexplainable, consciousness. He also helps guide the reader on how presence is the end to our suffering when it is put into practice. I also found it helpful how he encourages reflection to the reader in order to process the paragraph read.
2. Taming the Tiger Within by Thich Nhat Hanh
This book is a helpful tool to guide someone through processing complex emotions such as anger and pain, and how to communicate with those who are the source of our feelings. The book is written with a quote per page with insight by Hanh on how anger may feel and what is the best mindful technique to work past it.
3. Homebody by Rupi Kaur
This is the third poetry book released by Kaur. This time, she emphasizes on the importance of treating ourselves with softness as well as reminding us of the divine Beings we are by stranding up for ourselves as. This beautiful poetry book definitely empowers me and anyone who reads it.
4. The Pocket Book of Native American Wisdom (Published by ARCTURUS)
This is an insightful, yet small coffee table book with incredibly profound words from various Native American Chiefs and people from different Tribes that leave me feeling inspired through their ways of life. The quotes discuss morals, spirituality, civilization, society and brings awareness to oneself. I like to turn to a random page every now and then, and I'm never disappointed.
5. Psychology - A Complete Introduction by Dr. Sandi Mann
Mindfulness and psychology go hand in hand and this book has good examples of setting a foundation to getting to understand our psyche. Mann introduces brief yet informative descriptions of mental disorders and it's possible causes for depression, anorexia, bipolar disorder and more. (PLEASE NOTE: This book is intended for educational purposes and not intended to self-diagnose. Read mindfully and responsibly.)
6. You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero
This badass book written by author and speaker Jen Sincero is all about seeing the value and creating love for oneself that is well-deserved and needed. I have seen this book everywhere I went and my friends raved about it - rightfully so! Sincero captivates the reader with her personal life experiences that combines mindfulness, story-telling and inspiration for the reader to create the life they want.
7. Nature's Pharmacy by Charlotte Haigh, Anne McIntyre, Sarah Merson
This is an excellent book combining mindfulness and wellness together. Nature's Pharmacy provides 200 natural remedies for nourishing the body's immune system as well as tracing back the origins of herbalism, whole fruits and vegetables, nuts, spices, oils, and vinegars just to name a few. The origins range from Egyptian, Mayan, Roman times and more. There are also simple and delicious recipe ideas to incorporate each natural remedy into your lifestyle.
8. 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos by Jordan Peterson
Written by clinical Psychology professor Jordan Peterson, 12 Rules for Life invites the reader into his 12 in-depth life philosophies for self-help that are backed by his personal experiences as well as citing mythology and the ways of animals and creatures. His rules range from "tell the truth, or at least don't lie," to "don't bother children when they are skateboarding," Peterson's book is an exceptional read. I recommend this book to anyone that has the urge to take accountability for their life and be a better person.
9. Gratitude: Poems of Life and Love by Kathryn Carole Ellison
Beginning with wanting to create something special for her kids in the 1970's, Kathryn Carole Ellison began writing poetry on spiritual topics such as refection, possibilities, awakening, and gratitude that became published for the whole world to read. Gratitude is my favorite poetry book from hers because it reminds me that the beauty that this world gives us should not be taken for granted.
10. The I of the Storm: Embracing Conflict, Creating Peace by Gary Simmons
The I of the Storm helps enlightens us to understand the way our minds perceive conflict versus the best suggested way. He also introduces the opportunity to make peace while the conflict is on going with the help of biblical versus, spiritual philosophies as well as his knowledge as a martial artist. Simmon's approach is unique by bringing the reader "aware-apy" or questions that allow us to do inner work based on the chapter's topic.
"You can't stop the waves, but you can learn how to surf." - John Kabat-Zinn