Over the past 2 months I've had the wonderful opportunity of learning about mindfulness, I've now completed an eight week Stress Based Mindfulness course, with a wonderful tutor, Jill Savage.
I've put my mindfulness to the test on a couple of occasions, (probably more than I realise), but at the weekend it dawned on me how much it has changed my thoughts are processed, how my inner critic works and my negative self story telling... so here's why..
I made the huge decision to take my lovely Spanish mare out to a horse show, which we have not done before, so for both her and I it was a first, lots of preparation went into this wonderful day, bathing, plaiting, tack cleaning, deciding what class to enter, what I needed to wear, how long would it take to get there, etc etc.
So we arrived at the show ground, all in one piece, nerves starting to come through, we entered our details for the class and off I went to get tacked up, dressed and show ring ready.... except that I had left my riding hat at home....
At this point, i then started to go down a well worn route, of self berating, how stupid I was, I've ruined everything, etc..... and then it stopped.
My wonderful mindfulness parachute kicked into place and I was able to bring back my mind, my inner critic, all the nonsense I used to tell myself.. My mindfulness muscles came into it's own... I said to myself, it doesn't matter, everything will be ok.. and it was, my mind was able to think clearly and luckily I was able to get a riding to wear in the show ring..
I practice my mindfulness every day and I use it with my coaching clients, my next step is to start to learn how to teach it to others, to let others experience the feeling of being present, of not having to go down the routes the brain has taken them before, the routes which are negative, to help build their own parachutes.