Have you ever thought of how mindfulness can actually help your well-being? In this post, I am going to walk you through the five components of mindfulness and will introduce you to the world of gratitude.
Mindfulness allows you to enter a state of nonjudgmental conscious awareness. In this state, you are able to make deliberate choices about your thoughts and emotions.
Mindfulness can be divided into five components which are:
- Awareness in the present moment
- Observing the mind and body
- Non-reactivity to inner experience
- Describing one’s experience
- Non-judgment of experience
Awareness in the present moment
The awareness component shows that you have the ability to consciously choose where you want your attention to go. Like a captain chooses where he wants his ship to go. Thus, this skill allows you to choose what we want to focus on now.
Observing the mind and body
The observing component means that you can reach your sensations, perceptions, thoughts, and feelings that appear in your mind and body. Thus, you can separate the experience from your behavior. Therefore, you can make a choice on how to react to the experience by outsmarting the automatic reaction.
Non-reactivity to inner experience
Non-reactivity to inner experience component allows you to recognize your thought and emotion without being overwhelmed by it. Which helps you to decide whether to act on the impulse or not.
Describing one’s experience
Describing one’s experience component allows labeling your thoughts and feelings in the present moment (right now). That does not mean that you start to name them as good or bad. But you simply recognize your thoughts and emotions as they appear.
Non-judgment of experience
Non-judgment of experience component means that you become less attached to your thoughts. And you start understanding that your thought is not the reality but rather the way of conceptualizing the present moment.
Mindfulness and Gratitude
Gratitude is a personality trait and an emotional state. It is believed to be an experience that helps to connect us to the external world in a meaningful and deep way. The researches have shown that gratitude influences positive and negative states of mood. Moreover, there is a relationship between gratitude and well-being. As a result, when you start practicing mindfulness, you become noticing and being grateful for the positive aspect of life that usually go unappreciated. For example, simply waking up in the morning in a peaceful and safe environment is worth of appreciation. However, this usually goes unnoticed during our hectic lives. The more you start appreciating what seems to be common, the more positive well-being you will experience.
It is important to be open, receptive and non-judgmental
It is important to be open, receptive and non-judgmental. Because it is harder to be grateful when we are unhappy with ourselves. Also, equally important not to be overwhelmed by negative emotions by being able to stay in the present moment. Like being the captain of our emotions and thoughts.
If you are locked in an emotionally heated debate with another person, you probably experience the difficulty of thinking about this person in a grateful manner. In the case of this situation, you can start practicing gratefulness for this person in a way that he/she teaches you to be more patient or to think more broadly. Finally, the components of mindfulness (observation and description of one’s internal experience) can contribute to gratitude. Also, if you are in a state of attention where your thoughts and emotions can be observed and described, you become your own manager of your behavior and you choose how to act. Finally, if you notice that your thoughts become negative, you as a manager can redirect them into a more positive one by appreciating what makes your life wonderful!
Simple things to be grateful for:
- A roof over your head
- Plenty of drinkable water
- Your friends and family
- Your health
- Access to the internet
- An ability to read this post
- Freedom of choice
- The ability to take a rest
Swickert, R., Bailey, E., Hittner, J., Spector, A., Benson-Townsend, B., & Silver, N. C. (2019). The Mediational Roles of Gratitude and Perceived Support in Explaining the Relationship Between Mindfulness and Mood. Journal of Happiness Studies, 20(3), 815–828. https://doi-org.nlhhg.idm.oclc.org/10.1007/s10902-017-9952-0