Thursday, May 5, 2016

The Power of Mindfulness

Last night I attended a STEM and mindfulness seminar with Caitlin Krause. Sometimes I think sometimes people see mindfulness as a person sitting cross legged on the floor with their thumb and index finger touching, eyes closed in meditation. Mindfulness is bigger than this image! I often wonder how we can be more mindful in an age where being plugged in feels like a necessity. 

She discussed the importance of presence and being in the now. I learned about the Triple A. We need to be aware of our self and other. We need to be advancing as active, curious, and insightful humans. She mentioned the importance of stretching ourselves outward and inward. Being authentic is vital to being mindfulness. She asked us to think about if we are aware of ourselves and our five senses. We were also asked to think about if there was enough empty space for free flowing thoughts and observations. I loved when she said we often show up physically but we might not be present or ready to receive input. This reminded me of sometimes how I want to put myself in a time out chair while all the chaos going around me disappears.  Some of my biggest take aways from this evening were:

“Mindfulness increases empathy and connection capacity for relational trust”

“The capacity to care is the thing which gives life its deepest significance” Pablo Casals

That we need to be in zone and flowing. “If you’re not in a mindful space, those creative ideas won’t flow.” This made me think of the Rube Goldberg machines the students are designing and testing. They need to flow and be in the present in order to successfully test their design.

“Learning comes alive when you feel like you are playing rather than working. It comes alive when you are experiencing the joy of discovery and creativity.” Manjul Bhargava

“Technology is not a substitute for people.”

In the fall I will be embarking on a journey of mindfulness with my incoming students. I highly suggest students taking yoga classes or downloading a mediation app to their device. We all need to learn to calm down and breathe. We also need to remember to take a look around us once in a while, but also to take a look inside.   

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