Colt Roundup

I’m Mindful, Are You?

A+high+school+student+practicing+meditation.
A high school student practicing meditation.

A high school student practicing meditation.

Kristen Tang

Kristen Tang

A high school student practicing meditation.

Kristen Tang, Staff Writer

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Mindfulness is a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment. Not everyone knows what this means, but everyone has the potential to do it. Mindfulness is more important than ever. As Mindful.org states, “When we’re mindful, we reduce stress, enhance performance, gain insight and awareness through observing our mind, and increase our attention to others’ well-being.” Being mindful can be something that helps us in our everyday life.

How can someone be mindful? People hear of being mindful and have a vague idea of what it is about, but they don’t actually know how to achieve mindfulness. It seems easy, and many think they are already mindful. Sophomore Camila Franco believes, “Mindfulness is when you are aware of people and other ideas.” In an article on Atlantic.com, English teacher, Argos Gonzalez, says that being mindful is also being aware of our feelings, our emotions, and how they impact us. Huffington Post claims that meditation is the most sure fire way to become more mindful. They report that meditation can improve creative thinking, people’s energy, stress levels, and their success.

In addition to meditation, there are also many other ways to be mindful. There is also an abundance of benefits. Huffington Post has a list of different ways to be mindful. Some of them are taking walks, creating, paying attention to breathing, unitasking, knowing when to not check their phones, and seeking out new experiences. Engaging in imaginative thinking and fantasizing can help people be more mindful as well. Meditation is the most well known method to become more mindful. Headspace, an app that helps people with meditation, reveals, “Meditation isn’t about becoming a different person, a new person, or even a better person. It’s about training in awareness and getting a healthy sense of perspective. You’re not trying to turn off your thoughts or feelings.”

Mindfulness can be very helpful in life. The American Psychological Association has a list of benefits we can gain from being mindful. They say it can reduce stress and that mindfulness meditation can decrease anxiety. It also improves your memory and creates greater cognitive flexibility. Furthermore, it can help someone’s ability to respond well to relationship stress and help with communication. Mindfulness can easily help you be a better person. Sophomore Sekope Fainu tells Colt Roundup that if you’re not mindful “you could be a stuck up person, and nobody likes a stuck up person.”

Mindfulness is also being implemented in schools all over. Mindfulschools.org is a website all about why mindfulness is important in schools. The organization offers different courses in mindfulness meditation. They address that healthy stress is a part of life, but it can be replaced with toxic stress, which can be harmful. The hope is to show students how to deal with that stress properly, so that they don’t have toxic stress. They believe that mindfulness is the answer. Learning mindfulness in school can help improve “cognitive outcomes, social-emotional skills, and well being.” We asked Cottonwood student Klasina Allred to explain her opinion about mindfulness in school. She says, “It’s important for staying on top of things and not being stressed.” Mindfulness can be very beneficial and is changing the world in many ways.

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I’m Mindful, Are You?