I am quite good at removing myself from mailing lists, but I had forgotten to do so for Not on The High Street after I recently bought something from them.
In my inbox last week landed an email entitled ‘Shop mindfulness’. It detailed all the things you could buy for mindfulness – special notebooks, hand lettered signs, beauty products, MUGS(!), the list went on.
My immediate reaction was ARGH! Buying mindfulness – but a key part of mindfulness is simplicity!
I calmed down a bit – it’s not very mindful to stay cross – but it did get me thinking about how we are always trying to buy the answer to our problems, that we can buy a nice notebook and a hand lettered sign quoting Thich Nach Han or someone and all will be well in our lives.
Again it is this idea that we can attain something without doing the work. I recently saw a review where ow someone had deducted stars for a music theory book because it hadn’t downloaded the knowledge into their brain and they still had to do the work themselves. I kid you not – here it is:
As expected from the for dummies series, clearly laid out and easy to understand. However it only lays out the steps needed, you still need to do put in the time and effort. [sic]
Where has this come from?
I’ve written before about putting the effort in and it is something we have to do again and again, day after day if we want to improve. It’s about the process of showing up and doing the work.
Mindfulness isn’t an onerous practice, but it is something you have to apply everyday. Take a breath, take some more, take time out, be right here in this present moment, not worrying about tomorrow or having angst about yesterday. Being present makes our lives richer, it allows you to spot the things to be grateful for, happy about. But it does take a bit of work and nothing you can buy will replace that.